Are vasectomies safe?

Posted on 12 May 2023 by Natalia
Are vasectomies safe?

Looking for a permanent method of contraception? Then a vasectomy might be for you! This surgical procedure, which involves blocking the vas deferens, prevents the sperm from passing into the semen and therefore prevents fertilisation. What are the advantages and drawbacks of this type of contraception? Read on to find out!

There are two types of vasectomy:

  • Conventional vasectomy: An incision is made on both sides of the scrotum to cut the vas deferens.
  • No-scalpel vasectomy: The doctor makes small puncture holes in the scrotum to reach the vas deferens. This technique is less painful and less invasive than traditional vasectomy, and the risk of postoperative complications is minimal. It is also just as effective.

What are the advantages and drawbacks of a vasectomy?

A vasectomy allows a man to take charge of their own contraception and to free their partners from restrictive contraceptive methods (birth control pills, IUD, etc.). This safe method of contraception allows couples to enjoy a fulfilling sex life, free from the fear of pregnancy.

The advantages of a vasectomy

  • Peace of mind: You don't have to worry about your partner forgetting to take her pill or condom breakage. You’ll both feel freer!
  • Effectiveness: With a 99% success rate, vasectomy is the most effective method of contraception.
  • Low risk: The procedure is simple and does not require a general anaesthetic. Patients can return to their everyday life very quickly.
  • Covered by the NHS: Your vasectomy should be covered by the NHS. However, the wait list may be long.

LOVE Team Tip
A vasectomy will not protect you against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Keep using condoms if you’re having sex with an unfamiliar partner.

The drawbacks of a vasectomy

  • Post-operative pain: You may feel some moderate pain in the scrotum. This should disappear quickly with the right medication.
  • Delayed sexual activity: You should wait until you have fully recovered before having sex again.
  • Elimination of live sperm: Sperm should disappear within three months of the operation. You won’t be immediately infertile, and during this period you’ll need to use another method of contraception to prevent pregnancy.

Are vasectomies reversible?

Vasectomy is more or less irreversible depending on the country in which it is performed.

  • In the UK, a vasectomy cannot be easily reversed. Plus, while the operation itself is usually covered by the NHS, a reversal will not be.
  • In other countries (like Australia) : reversibility is possible because of different surgical techniques and legislation. However, reversibility is never completely guaranteed and it is important to remember that vasovasostomy is not 100% effective.

Before undergoing any surgery, you should discuss the issue carefully with your doctor and ask yourself whether you’re absolutely sure that you don’t want children. If you’re on the fence, don't take any risks and use another method of contraception.

How will a vasectomy affect your sex life?

The answer to this question is, of course, crucial for all men who are thinking about using this method of contraception.

  • Ejaculation and semen texture: You won't notice any difference before or after the procedure. Your ejaculations and the texture of your semen will be exactly the same. Your semen will simply not contain any sperm (which is the point of the operation!)
  • Erections and libido: Again, nothing will change! Your sexual desire will be completely unaffected by your vasectomy, as will your erectile capacity.
  • Feelings and pleasure: Your sexual pleasure will remain the same. You may even enjoy yourself more, as you’ll no longer have the hassle of contraception to think of.

The vasectomy will not affect your libido or your pleasure. It will have no negative effect on your sex life and will not prevent you from enjoying intense and satisfying sexual activity.