Vasectomy or Male Sterilization is a surgical process to prevent pregnancy permanently. The process prevents the sperm from leaving the testes and entering the urethra to prevent fertilization in the female.
It is a minor surgery and more than 500,000 men in the U.S choose Vasectomy as a method for Birth control. The surgery can be carried out under local anesthesia or general anesthesia depending on certain conditions. Under local anesthesia, the person is awake but doesn’t feel any pain, while under the general anesthesia, the person is asleep during the operation.
The Male Vasectomy procedure:
Vasectomy is a minor surgery and doesn't take more than 20-30 minutes. The doctors usually use the local anesthesia which keeps the patient awake but the patient stays oblivious to pain during the surgery.
The procedure differs from the type of Vasectomy. There are two types of Vasectomy - Conventional or Incision Vasectomy, in which one or two small cuts are made in the scrotum and the vas deferens tubes are blocked off and then tied back with clips or heat. The skin is later closed back with stitches.
No-scalpel Vasectomy is the newer method which does not require making any cuts in the skin. This lowers the risk of infections and is also less painful than Conventional Vasectomy. A small pointy clamp is used to puncture the skin followed by the sealing and placing back of vas deferens.
The process keeps the sperm out of the semen while the ones that stay back in testicles are absorbed by the body The process may take up to 3 months until there isn’t any sperm left in the semen. About 12 weeks after the surgery, the person needs to submit a sample of semen to be tested for the sperm. If the test confirms that the semen is sperm-free, the surgery is considered successful. Sometimes it may be required to test more than one samples if there are still sperm found in the semen.
How Effective is the process?
A vasectomy is more effective than any other method of birth control. It is proved to be nearly 100% effective. Only in rare cases where the vas deferens grows back together or rejoin, pregnancy could happen again. The risks of pregnancy after having a vasectomy is one in 2,000 for men.
Serious complications are rare and usually, there are no side effects of having a Vasectomy. Though some men may feel pain and discomfort following a Vasectomy, the pain usually goes away with time. However, in highly rare cases it might require further surgery to fix the pain. There could also be bleeding, infection, or swelling, which is usually healed by the body itself a couple of days after having a Vasectomy.
The major risk is that - sometimes the vas deferens tubes still find a way to create a path to one another, which can enable the sperm to pass again and cause pregnancy. Though this happens quite rarely but is still a risk to Vasectomy.
Breaking the Myth
While there may be some potential risks of having a Vasectomy, there are few misconceptions on its side-effects. A Vasectomy does not affect sexual performance or libido in men. It is merely a process to keep the sperm from combining with the egg and prevent pregnancy. And although it causes pain and discomfort for a few days, the pain is completely bearable by the patient.
The vasectomy surgery takes only 20-30 minutes and the process is also very simple and straightforward. There are no complications in Vasectomy and there’s hardly any risk element involved during the surgery. The recovery process is also quick with an average recovery period of 10 days after surgery which makes up the perfect excuse to stay on the couch for a few days and binge-watch your favorite series.
There are no serious side-effects with the surgery. The sexual performance and libido remain the same as before and there is no change in the hormones. According to Urologists, partners are unlikely to notice a difference after a Vasectomy.
Unexpected pregnancies can be a huge burden for a couple. It provides the partners with an incredible level of sexual freedom and also the safest way to put unwanted pregnancies to rest.
Something to consider before having a Vasectomy:
Choosing Vasectomy is a very safe and good option for birth control, but it is a permanent process. Things need to be planned out with the family before considering Vasectomy. If the person still wants kids in the future, Vasectomy may not be the best option to consider. Although Male Vasectomy reversal is possible, the process is quite complex and expensive, and may not be successful as pregnancy might not be possible again.