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Everything You Need to Know About a Vasectomy

**Okanagan Health Surgical No Longer Offers Vasectomies**

A vasectomy is a minor surgical procedure that is one of the safest and most effective forms of contraception for men.

It has many benefits including:

  • Simple and quick procedure (approximately 30 minutes)
  • Highly reliable method of permanent birth control
  • Avoids the risks of pregnancy and childbirth
  • Puts men in control of their reproduction

At our Kelowna Health Centre, our board certified plastic surgeons can provide safe vasectomy procedures as well as vasectomy reversals for men who are considering this birth control option.

What is a Vasectomy?

A vasectomy, or male sterilization, is a form of permanent contraception that involves surgically cutting or blocking two tubes (vas deferens) so that sperm can no longer get into the semen.

A vasectomy is an extremely effective way of preventing pregnancy and it’s estimated that only 2 out of 1,000 couples will pregnant the first year after the procedure.

How is a vasectomy performed?

A vasectomy is typically performed by a qualified plastic surgeon in an outpatient surgery centre. After the anesthesia has taken effect, the vas deferens will be operated on, one at a time.

During this operation, your plastic surgeon will make two small incisions on either side of the scrotum. This provides access to the tubes and they will then be cut out and at least one side will be sealed by suturing or clamping.

How long does the procedure take?

A vasectomy is a very simple and quick procedure when performed by a knowledgeable plastic surgeon and takes approximately 30 minutes.

What is the recovery period?

Vasectomy recovery times vary but most men can return to work after 2-3 days and resume normal physical activity within a week

What is a vasectomy reversal?

Although vasectomies are viewed as a permanent form of birth control, it is possible to have a vasectomy reversal. However, it’s important to note that the success of a vasectomy reversal depends on several factors including:

  • The experience of the plastic surgeon
  • The age and fertility status of the female partner
  • The length of time since the vasectomy

Is A Vasectomy The Best Choice For You?

While a vasectomy reversal is an option, it’s important to remember that the surgery is not always successful. Therefore, deciding to get a vasectomy is a very serious decision and should be taken with the help of a qualified plastic surgeon.

If you are considering a vasectomy, it can have many benefits including:

  • No ongoing costs (e.g. purchasing condoms or birth control pills)
  • You no longer have to worry about an unplanned pregnancy
  • It’s safer than tubal ligation or pregnancy termination
  • It gives you ownership of your reproductive life

However, a vasectomy may NOT be the right choice for you if:

  • You are undecided about having any more children
  • You are very young
  • Your current relationship is unstable
  • You are considering having a vasectomy just to please your partner
  • You are counting on being able to reverse your vasectomy in the future

What Are The Risks of a Vasectomy?

A vasectomy is a quick and straightforward procedure that can provide enormous benefits for patients. However, as with all surgeries, it does come with associated risks and it’s important to discuss these with your plastic surgeon beforehand.

This will enable you to make an informed decision about whether or not the procedure is the right and safe option for you.

Some of the risks include:

  • Infection of the surgery site
  • Mild pain/discomfort/swelling
  • Bleeding or blood clot inside the scrotum
  • Pregnancy in the event that the vasectomy fails
  • Fluid buildup in the testicles

During an in-depth consultation, one of our plastic surgeons can discuss the full risks and benefits of this surgery and help guide you in the process of deciding whether or not it is the right option for you.

**Okanagan Health Surgical No Longer Offers Vasectomies**


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