7 Important Vasectomy Questions for Your Doctor
August 12, 2022
If you and your partner are looking for a more permanent birth control method
, you might consider a vasectomy. Although vasectomies are common, knowledge about them isn’t quite as common or talked about. If you are considering a vasectomy
, talking with your primary care doctor is a great way to learn more and start the process.
We consulted with Dr. Aurosis Reddy
a primary care doctor with Renown Health – South Carson
, about key topics to discuss with your doctor when considering a vasectomy.
What is a vasectomy?
A vasectomy – also called male sterilization – is a form of male birth control that blocks sperm from reaching semen, according to the American Urological Association (AUA)
How effective and safe are vasectomies?
Vasectomies are one of the most effective methods of birth control with a long-term success rate of over 99%. A vasectomy has been a safe and successful birth control method for many years. More than 500,000 men elect to have vasectomies every year in the U.S., and the number is rising. A vasectomy is also generally a low-risk procedure with a low complication rate ranging between 1-2%.
What does the recovery period look like?
A vasectomy is typically a quick procedure that takes under thirty minutes and can be performed in an outpatient setting under local anesthesia.
Recovery from a vasectomy is also considered relatively easy. After a vasectomy, most can:
- Resume everyday activities within two to three days
- Resume normal exercise in one week
- Start engaging in sexual activity again in one week
Your doctor can provide more details on what your individualized recovery process will look like.
Is there a follow up process after the vasectomy?
It is important to note that sterilization does not happen immediately after a vasectomy. It takes about two to three months for your semen to become sperm-free. At your follow up appointment, your doctor will use semen analysis to verify your semen is clear of sperm – only then can you be confident that pregnancy is not a risk. Make sure to discuss an alternate birth control method with your doctor to use in the meantime until your vasectomy success is confirmed.
Can a vasectomy be reversed?
A vasectomy is meant to be permanent. Although vasectomy reversals are sometimes possible, they aren’t always effective – there are no guarantees that your fertility will come back. Furthermore, a vasectomy reversal can take up to six hours and is a more complicated, delicate procedure than the vasectomy. It may also be expensive and isn’t usually covered by insurance.
It’s important to take this into consideration when deciding if a vasectomy is right for you. If you are uncertain about the permanent aspect of the vasectomy, an alternative method may be the best option.
Will it affect my sex life?
This is one of the biggest myths surrounding vasectomies. No, a vasectomy should not affect your sex life. You should not experience any difference in your sexual function or pleasure. In fact, it might increase your comfort level with sex and make it more enjoyable by reducing stress related to pregnancy.
Is a vasectomy the best option for me and/or my partner?
You and your doctor will want to make sure a vasectomy is the best option for you. If you and/or your partner are still unsure about whether you should have children or are interested in temporary birth control, a vasectomy may not be right for you.