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What to Consider When You’re Thinking About Getting a Vasectomy

A vasectomy is a safe, effective procedure that can be used to prevent conception. It is minimally invasive and performed on an outpatient basis, so it is a popular choice among men who need a permanent, reliable method of birth control.

How Does It Work?

During a vasectomy, the surgeon cuts the vas deferens, which is the tube that carries sperm to the prostate. This prevents sperm from exiting the body during ejaculation. Instead, they are reabsorbed by the body.

Vasectomies are typically complete within 15 to 30 minutes. The surgery is performed under local anesthesia, and you can typically drive yourself home after the procedure. To minimize swelling, you can place an ice pack on the area for eight hours following the surgery. The pain from this procedure is minimal and can usually be controlled with an over-the-counter pain reliever.

Is It Safe?

The vasectomy is a safe option for men who are no longer interested in conceiving children. In the past, vasectomies were performed with a scalpel. Today, however, a less invasive method has been developed: the no-scalpel vasectomy. With the NSV, trauma to the area is minimal, pain is reduced, and recovery is faster.

Is It Effective?

Vasectomies are highly effective. However, sterility will not be immediate, so you will need to use an alternative form of birth control until your urologist clears you to discontinue it. This may take several months.

The vasectomy is a permanent birth control solution. Once the vas deferens has been cut, sperm will no longer exit the body during ejaculation. The procedure can be reversed with an additional surgery, but the complete return of fertility is not guaranteed. For this reason, you should have a vasectomy only if you are sure that you don’t want to conceive any children in the future.

Will It Change My Sex Life?

If you choose to have a vasectomy, you will be able to resume sexual activity approximately one week after the procedure. Although having a vasectomy prevents sperm from being released from your body, it does not alter your hormones or affect your libido. Your seminal fluid will still look and feel the same as it did before the procedure, and your ability to produce and maintain an erection will not change.