Vasectomy

Vasectomy

Vasectomy is an operation to stop the flow of sperm from the testicles into the urethra; making a man sterile. It will prevent mixing of sperm with ejaculated fluid during sex. It is intended to be irreversible.

Small scrotal incisions are made under general anaesthesia to deliver the Vas deferens (tubes containing sperm) to the surface and a segment of Vas is removed between surgical sutures. After vasectomy, sperm is unable to travel to the prostate gland to mix with semen. Some men notice a change of semen consistency after surgery. Absorbable sutures are used to close the small wounds. Removal of sutures is not needed. Discharge from hospital is on the day of surgery.

It is normal to experience slight discomfort or "heaviness" in the scrotum for a week after vasectomy. It is advisable to avoid all strenuous and sexual activity for 2 weeks after vasectomy to help convalescence.

You are not sterile immediately after vasectomy. There will be sperm within the Vas deferens which will need to be cleared with regular ejaculation. A confirmatory semen analysis test is done 2 months after vasectomy to ensure sterility. 20% of men will take more than 2 months to achieve sterility. Semen tests will be repeated at regular intervals until sterility is confirmed.

Risks associated with Vasectomy are minor (<2%) and include: 1 in 2000 failure rate, wound infection, haematoma, sperm granuloma and chronic pain. Management of these issues will be discussed in detail during your consultation.