Vasectomy: What You Need To Know

Today, there are many different forms of birth control, most of them being for the woman. These include the contraceptive pill, the implant or the intrauterine device (IUD), injection, barrier methods such as the condom (which is for the men), the ipill (emergency contraception), etc. However, all these methods come with their own success/failure rates as well as side effects which can be quite harmful.

A vasectomy for a man is one sure-fire way to keep pregnancy at bay and which does not cause any harmful side effects to the woman. However, it does eliminate the man’s ability to impregnate the woman, completely sterilizes him and is a method of permanent contraception. However, it is a reversible procedure if the couple decides to change their mind about having a family.

A vasectomy is a surgical procedure wherein the man’s vas deferens, also known as ductus deferens, (the tiny muscular tube of the male reproductive system that carries the sperm from the epididymis to the ejaculatory duct) are cut and tied. This prevents the sperm from entering the man's urethra and being ejaculated into the woman and fertilizing her through sexual intercourse. After a vasectomy, the man will still be able to ejaculate; however, the semen will not have any sperm in it. A vasectomy is the next best birth control method after complete abstinence from intercourse. The number of men getting a vasectomy each year in India and around the globe is on the rise.

It lowers the man’s sex drive – A vasectomy will not decrease the urge or desire to have sex (for the man) and does not negatively impact the man’s ability to have erections and ejaculations. It is a painful procedure – It is normal to experience some amount of pain after the procedure, but most of the times the procedure is completely painless. The doctor may recommend some anti-inflammatories, common pain killers or ask you to apply an icepack to the treated area. Post recovery is a long process – Most men will take about a week to recover after having a vasectomy. It is advisable to check with the doctor how long you should wait for before having sex or engage in physically demanding activities.

A vasectomy is usually a 30-minute procedure and is performed by urologist/ andrologist in hospital as a day care procedure. A vasectomy will not be effective right away. This is because even though new sperm will not be able to enter the semen, there will still be a lot of residuary semen in the pipeline that will take time to clear. So during this time for 2-3 months, you and your partner should use other forms of birth control to prevent pregnancy. A vasectomy reversal is a procedure that is performed to reverse a vasectomy, should you and your partner change your mind about having children. In this surgery, your doctor will reconnect the vas deferens (the tubes that transfer the sperm from the testicles into the semen) using advanced surgical microscope. After a vasectomy reversal, the sperm will be present in the semen again, and you and your partner will be able to get pregnant. A vasectomy reversal can take 4-5 hours, and it is not 100% effective. It could take anywhere between 4-12 months to get your partner pregnant after the reversal procedure. Visit Nu Hospitals to know more or book an appointment with our Uro-Andrologist.

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