A woman can get pregnant if a man’s sperm reaches one of her eggs. Vasectomy, considered the safest and easiest form of surgical sterilization, is one method of male contraception where a small operation is performed to cut, block or seal the tubes that carry sperm from a man's testicles to the penis. This prevents sperm from reaching the seminal fluid. There will be no sperm in the semen, so a woman's egg can't be fertilised.
Some of the features of vasectomy include:
- Vasectomy is more than 99% effective.
- Once vasectomy is done, you don’t have to think about contraception again.
- You may need contraception for a few weeks post operation because sperm stay in the tubes leading to the penis.
- You may experience a bruised, swollen or painful scrotum after the operation.
- There is a little chance of infection as with any surgery.
- Reversing the operation is rare and not easy.
- Vasectomy doesn't protect against sexually transmitted infections.
Most vasectomies are carried out under local anaesthesia. It is quick and relatively painless surgical procedure
. Only your scrotum and testicles will be numbed. You will not feel any pain but the process can slightly be uncomfortable for some. Post vasectomy, you’ll have the same sex drive or ability to enjoy sex
as before. You’ll have normal erections
and ejaculations. The only difference is that your semen will not contain sperm.
There are two forms of vasectomies
- Conventional vasectomy: During this procedure, the doctor makes two small cuts on each side of your scrotum. This enables him to access the tubes (vas deferens) that carry sperm out of your testicles. Each tube is cut and a small section removed. The ends of the tubes are then closed. The incisions are stitched, usually using dissolvable stitches, which will disappear naturally within about a week.
- No-scalpel vasectomy: During this procedure, the doctor will feel the vas deferens underneath the skin of your scrotum and then hold them in place using a small clamp. He will then make a tiny puncture hole in the skin of the scrotum and perform the operation. In a no-scalpel vasectomy, there will be little bleeding and no stitches and considered less painful and less likely to cause complications than a conventional vasectomy.
It’s common to have discomfort, swelling and bruising of your scrotum for a few days after the vasectomy. You can take painkillers like paracetamol. You will have some non-harming blood in your semen in the first few ejaculations after a vasectomy
. However there are certain things to remember for a quick recovery:
- Wearing close-fitting underwear which will support your scrotum and also help ease any discomfort or swelling.
- Check with your doctor if it is safe for you to have a bath or shower after your operation.
- You’ll be able to resume work one or two days after vasectomy but you should avoid sport and heavy lifting for at least one week after the operation.
- You can resume sexual activities as soon as it is comfortable to do so, although it is best to wait for a couple of days. You will still have sperm in your semen immediately after the operation, as it takes time to clear the remaining sperm in your tubes.
It’s important to discuss with your doctor about your circumstances and provide information and counselling on vasectomy
before agreeing to the procedure. You should only have a vasectomy if you are certain that you do not want to have any or more children