YIKES. In case you were wondering...
When you're in a long-term relationship and you've gotten to the point where you've had all the children that you want to have, or have decided that being a parent isn't for you, the question of a more permanent type of birth control comes up. Your husband/partner/significant other may decide to have a vasectomy.
A vasectomy is when a doctor closes or blocks the tubes that carry sperm. When the tubes are closed, the sperm can't get into the semen and makes it impossible for a woman to become pregnant.
There are two types of vasectomies: incision and no-scalpel. With an incision vasectomy, a local anesthetic is injected into the patient's pelvic area. The patient stays awake for the procedure. Then the doctor makes an incision on each side of the scrotum to reach each vas deferens (the tubes that carry sperm). Each tube is closed.
In most of these procedures, a small section of each tube is removed. Tubes may be tied off, blocked with surgical clips, or closed using an instrument with electrical current.
The no-scalpel vasectomy is much less traumatic than the traditional incision version.
For a no-scalpel or no-incision vasectomy, a tiny puncture is made in the penis, the tubes of the vas deferens are cut (very quickly) and are either cauterized or blocked. The puncture is so small that it will heal on its own and doesn't need any stitching, which eliminates any residual scarring.
With the no-scalpel vasectomy, there's a reduction in bleeding and the possibility of infection, bruising, and other complications. Here's a short video of a no-scalpel vasectomy.
While the no-scalpel vasectomy isn't as traumatic as the traditional vasectomy, there are still minimal chances of infection and bleeding. It's recommended that patients stay off their feet for about 24 to 48 hours after the procedure and not to have sex for 3 to 4 days after the procedure.
Although there isn't any more semen in the man's ejaculate, it will still look the same and will take a few months for the seminal fluid to be completely free of sperm.
Interested in learning more? Here's a medical video of the no-scalpel vasectomy.
Since the procedure only blocks the sperm from leaving the man's body, it has no ill effects on a man's sex drive or his ability to perform.
One of the benefits of this type of male birth control is that it's permanentl you don't have to have it redone from time to time. Although the procedure can be reversed, there's no guarantee that it will work, so it's recommended that patients undergo the procedure with every intention of it being non-reversible.