The idea of not worrying about birth control or condoms can be very alluring, and can even improve your sex life. However, the ‘right time’ to get a vasectomy is different for each person, and before you make a decision, you should consider some important factors.
A vasectomy is a minimally invasive surgery during which the tubes (called vasa deferentia) that deliver sperm into the ejaculate are sealed. A vasectomy is almost 100% effective in preventing pregnancies, and approximately half a million vasectomy procedures are performed each year in the United States. So… should you get one?
Reasons to Get Snipped
- Prolonged use of birth control pills may increase your partner’s risks of cancer.
- Sterilization for women (tubal ligation) is a more expensive and more invasive surgery with higher risks.
- If your partner has difficult and dangerous pregnancies, prevention of future pregnancies may be a great priority.
- In time, a vasectomy is often less expensive than other birth control methods.
Reasons to Wait
- If you’re less than 30 years old — even if you already have children, you might want to wait before getting a vasectomy.
- Consider this — if you became widowed, divorced or your child passed away, would you change your mind about having more children? Many people do change their minds, which is why freezing sperm before the vasectomy procedure is recommended.
Sperm Freezing & Vasectomies
Freezing sperm before the vasectomy is an excellent solution to any potential doubts you may be having about the procedure. In fact, it is recommended that nearly all vasectomy candidates ‘freeze first’. Freezing sperm before the vasectomy provides you with the benefits of having a vasectomy, while still being able to have children in the future if you desire.
What about Vasectomy Reversals?
Although vasectomy reversal surgery is available and is typically a highly successful procedure, you should always consider a vasectomy as permanent. A vasectomy reversal procedure has about a 90% chance of putting sperm back into the ejaculate. For these reasons, we urge you to weigh your options carefully before moving forward with a decision and to always ‘freeze first’!
Dr. Martin Bastuba is a board certified urologist and the founder of Male Fertility Specialists, a San Diego Vasectomy clinic. He also provides expertise on male fertility concerns and sexual health. You can read additional male fertility insights about topics such as low sperm count, impotence, and more at www. malefertility.md/blog