Thinking of a Vasectomy?
Many men of all ages come to the point where they consider having a vasectomy performed. For some men this will be an easy decision while for others it will be more difficult. Finding out everything you can about a vasectomy can help you make the right choice for you and your partner if you’re in a committed relationship.
The Decision to Have a Vasectomy or Not
When it comes to deciding if you should have a vasectomy or not most men will have different reasons for considering the option. Maybe you and your partner already have children and now no longer want to worry about birth control. Or maybe you’ve never wanted children and want to make sure that it doesn’t happen accidentally. No matter what the reasons are for wanting a vasectomy it’s important to take some time to understand exactly what’s going to happen both before, and after the surgery is done. Even though a vasectomy is reversible it’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to father a biological child at some time in the future if you change your mind. When thinking of getting a vasectomy, prepare to think of it as a permanent solution to birth control and not something that you can undo in the future.
Talking to Your Partner About Getting a Vasectomy
Even though the decision to have a vasectomy is really up to you it’s important that you include your partner in the decision making. A vasectomy is going to affect their future as well as yours. When you first meet with your urologist you might want to take your partner with you. You’ll both be reminded that a vasectomy is a permanent procedure in which there are no more children in your future. Many urologists require that your partner also sign the release papers with you. In any case many urologists will schedule your surgery in a about a month’s time to give you time to think about the permanence of the surgery before it’s finally done.
The Vasectomy Procedure is Effective and Safe
Having a vasectomy is both an effective and safe procedure. There are no serious types of complications that happen after you’ve had the surgery. Some men may experience some persistent pain for a few weeks after, however this can be controlled with pain medication. Sterilization doesn’t happen immediately after you’ve had the vasectomy. It can take up to 12 weeks or longer for any viable sperm to completely leave your reproductive system. This means you shouldn’t have unprotected sex until a sperm analysis is done to ensure that pregnancy isn’t possible.
How a Vasectomy is Performed
Your vasectomy is usually performed in your surgeon’s office on an out-patient basis. You’ll be awake through the entire procedure and given a local anesthetic to numb your scrotum. The surgeon will then make a tiny incision on one side of your scrotum. The vas deferens will be pulled out just a bit and a small section of it will be removed. Each end of the vas deferens will then be clamped. The same procedure is then done on the other side. You won’t need any stitches as these tiny incisions will heal quickly on their own.
After Care for Your Vasectomy
Once the vasectomy is finished you’ll be asked to rest for an hour or two before you’re allowed to go home. It’s a good idea to have someone there to drive you. Plan on taking a few days off work so that you can recover fully. You may experience bruising, swelling, and pain for a few days after surgery. Wear a jock strap to provide support to your scrotum and use ice to ease the swelling and pain. Try to get as much rest as you can and limit your activity. If needed you can take Acetaminophen for pain but don’t take medication that can cause bleeding and thin your blood such as Aspirin and Ibuprofen. As mentioned previously, you’re not sterile right after the vasectomy as sperm still need to work their way out of your body. Use protection for about three months at which time your doctor will schedule a sperm analysis to check on sperm count. Even though the vasectomy procedure is reliable it’s not 100 percent guaranteed. About 1 in a 1000 men will still have viable sperm after their vasectomy due to the vas deferens growing back together.
Importance of Vasectomy Education
More and more couples are choosing a vasectomy as their choice of permanent birth control. Vasectomy surgery is much less complicated, and non-intrusive than having a woman’s tubes tied. The most important thing that you can do before you have your vasectomy is to learn all the details ahead of time. Even though the procedure is minor the implications are permanent and life changing. Ask the questions you need to ask so that you’re completely in the know. This can reduce any anxiety that you might be feeling and make your vasectomy experience a positive one.