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Vasectomy: What You Need To Know

Vasectomy is a word that may inspire fear in some men. They might think of it as a painful procedure that ends their sexual drive and romantic life. Getting a vasectomy, while a serious decision, is not a risky, expensive or love-life ending decision. Vasectomies are a permanent form of birth control that makes impregnating a sexual partner nearly impossible under normal circumstances.

It is the most effective form of birth control for those who are sexually active, with only 0.15 percent of women becoming pregnant in the first year after their male partner received the procedure. This despite the first year being the most risky since for the first three months after the procedure there is still some chance of pregnancy while the last of the sperm is expelled from the vas deferens. While being a very effective birth control method, it does not offer any protection against sexually transmitted diseases so protection should still be used unless with a faithful partner.

To get an idea of what a vasectomy involves, let’s break down the procedure. A vasectomy is a very quick procedure, only lasting half an hour on average. It is also a very inexpensive procedure, with a cost of around $1,000 that is usually covered by insurance plans. The patient will not need to go to a hospital for the surgery, but generally will just go to their urologist’s office. The urologist will start by making sure the area is ready to be operated on. This will likely involve cleaning and shaving the area of incision.

After making sure the area is prepped, a local anesthetic will be applied, and then an incision will be made in the scrotum. The entire operation involves simply severing the vas deferens and then tying off or otherwise sealing the two ends before placing them back in the scrotum. The vas deferens carries sperm from the testes up to the prostate so it can be mixed into the semen. Without this tube to transport sperm, the semen will not have sperm included and can not induce pregnancy in a partner.

After the procedure, there will only be a couple days of soreness and life will then proceed as before. The most important thing to consider before getting a vasectomy though is: how certain are you that you never wish to have any (or any more) kids? Every year around 600,000 men get vasectomies done, so it is a common, safe and effective procedure. Around 5 percent of them end up trying to get it reversed though. There are vasectomy reversal procedures, but they are more complicated. These are often not covered by insurance companies and are much more expensive as well. Because the process of reversing a vasectomy is more complicated, these procedures are done in hospitals.

So, if you are interested in a more permanent form of birth control, getting a vasectomy is a great option. Think it over carefully before you decide to do it, but the in vast majority of cases, the procedure is safe, inexpensive and does not in any way inhibit quality of life – including your sex life. If you are interested in investigating if a vasectomy is right for you, seek out a great local urologist who can give you and your partner the information you need to make the right decision. Associated Urologists of North Carolina’s 15 board certified urologists would be proud to assist in this process. We serve those in and around Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, Cary, Wake Forest, Clayton, Dunn, Clinton and can be reached at 919-758-8677.

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