What is a Vasectomy?
Vasectomy is a minor surgical procedure in which the vas deferens, a thin tube that stores and transports sperm is cut and then tied or sealed so that the sperm can no longer get into the semen. It is a permanent method of birth control in men. It prevents the release of sperm when a man ejaculates.
Vasectomy can be performed by various surgical techniques and they include:
The testicles and scrotum are cleaned with an antiseptic solution. The procedure takes 20 to 30 minutes.
After thorough evaluation and discussion about the potential side effect and complications Dr Kim usually performs a vasectomy under general anaesthesia. Two small punctures or holes are made on the scrotum and a part of vas deferens is removed through the opening. The cut ends of the vas deferens are then tied off with a stitch. In some cases, electrocautery is then typically used to seal the ends with the heat. The skin is closed with absorbable sutures.
It is a technique that uses a small clamp rather than a scalpel to puncture the scrotum. The clamp is poked through the skin of the scrotum and then opened. This technique reduces bleeding, infection and pain and no skin stitches are often needed.
Vas Clip Implant Procedure
This technique does not require cutting and suturing the vas deferens, but rather uses a clip known as vas clip to lock and close the vas deferens. This method is not as effective as other methods of sealing off the vas deferens. Dr Kim does not perform this procedure.
Post Vasectomy Care
Swelling and minor pain may be felt in the scrotum area for several days after vasectomy.
Complications that might occur after a vasectomy are uncommon but include bleeding under the skin, infection at the site of incision.
Instructions to follow after surgery may include:
- Avoid heavy lifting for a week
- Apply cold packs to the area
- Wearing snug underwear to support the scrotum
- Get plenty of rest
After vasectomy, it usually takes a few months for all remaining sperm to ejaculate or reabsorb. Dr Kim will go through all the precautionary measures at the time of initial consultation and provide a patient information sheet.
Alternative methods of birth control must be used, until a semen sample test shows a zero sperm count.
In the long term, sperms can potentially leak from the cut end of the Vas deferens and form a small lump called sperm granuloma and inflammation of the tubes that carry sperms from the testicles. There is a small risk of developing testicular ache, post vasectomy pain syndrome (PVPS).
In very rare circumstances, the vas deferens can regrow or recanalise, and if it occurs, it could cause pregnancy.