The low­down

Irish Examiner - Feelgood - - Feature -

Get­ting a va­sec­tomy is a rel­a­tively easy thing to do.

Your first step is to dis­cuss the mat­ter with your GP. They may be able to carry out the pro­ce­dure them­selves or they can re­fer you to an­other GP who has re­ceived the rel­e­vant train­ing.

You should book your­self off work for 24 to 48 hours af­ter the pro­ce­dure as you will ex­pe­ri­ence some dis­com­fort af­ter­wards.

Turn up at the GP’s of­fice wear­ing loose-fit­ting trousers and sup­port­ive un­der­wear.

A lo­cal anaes­thetic will be ad­min­is­tered and the GP will then make an in­ci­sion in the tes­ti­cles, cut the vas def­er­ens tube — which car­ries the sperm from the tes­ti­cles to the pe­nis — and seal it at both ends. The GP will then sew the tes­ti­cles up again. All of this will take be­tween 15 and 30 min­utes.

You should ex­pect to feel some mi­nor dis­com­fort for up to 48 hours af­ter the pro­ce­dure. How­ever, a small num­ber of men, less than 1%, will ex­pe­ri­ence longer-term pain and may have to un­dergo a fur­ther pro­ce­dure to rec­tify the prob­lem.

A va­sec­tomy is not ef­fec­tive im­me­di­ately. Some sperm will re­main in the up­per part of the vas def­er­ens tubes. This means that you should con­tinue us­ing an­other form of con­tra­cep­tion for the first 20 to 24 weeks af­ter the va­sec­tomy un­til two se­men sam­ples have proven to be sperm free.

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