Q: After much thought, my wife and I have decided we’re happy with the size of our family, but I’m concerned about getting a vasectomy. Is it painful?
A: Vasectomies are one of the safest and most effective forms of birth control available. In fact, there are about 500,000 vasectomies done in the U.S. each year.
The procedure is very quick, taking between 8 and 10 minutes. Most vasectomies are outpatient procedures done with local anesthesia. There’s nothing for you to do to prepare, you just show up and then go home!
At Philadelphia Urology Associates, we use a method called no-scalpel vasectomy, which only requires tiny incisions – so small they do not even require stitches. The deferens, or the tubes that carry sperm away from the testicle to be added to semen, are cut or blocked. After recovery, you’ll have normal erections, sexual intercourse and ejaculation. The only difference will be there are no sperm!
After a vasectomy, you may feel some mild discomfort in the area, which can usually be relieved with an athletic support, ice pack or nonprescription pain medication. Recovery is quick, requiring only restrictions on heavy lifting and abstinence from intercourse for about a week.
After a vasectomy, it is important to note that it will take from three to six months for all living sperm to pass out of your reproductive tract. Your doctor will be able to tell you through a semen sample when you are sperm-free.