Nowadays the science has moved forward and the modern medicine is able to save even the weakest posteriority of the human. There’s no need in constant breeding in order to save at least a couple of your offsprings. Thus, the other significant question arises: how to control the quantity of the offsprings?
There are plenty of contraception methods, and we’ve discussed almost all of them previously. For some objective reasons, these options are mainly destined to women, except the well-known condoms, which are for both. But still there is one sure way of contraception for men – Vasectomy.
What is vasectomy?
Vasectomy (aka men sterilization) – is a voluntary surgical procedure, irreversible (without the additional surgery) cessation of the male reproductive function. In the USA vasectomy takes the third place among all available contraception options for the married couples. The first bestial vasectomy was performed in 1823, by the end of the 19-th century and at the beginning of 20-th vasectomy was used to reduce the probability of criminal posteriority appearance, depriving the violent criminals the right to have children. During the Second World War vasectomy has been recognized as one of the methods of birth control while previously birth control was generally the women business and men used to take little action in birth control issues. Today Vasectomy is one of the best contraception decisions for those, who already have children due to the objective reasons.
- The effectiveness of the method is more than 99%
- Does not affect the sexual life and does not influence the sexual sensation
- The method is reliable and permanent. The surgery is performed once and forever.
- The operation itself is simple (more than half-million men in the USA are operated annually).
- It does not affect libido, erection, and orgasm (as the testicles continue to produce testosterone). Hormonal level stays the same.
- It does not decrease the amount of sperm (sperm takes only 1% of the whole volume of semen).
- The operation is warranted if performed by a highly-qualified urologist-andrologist.
It is also believed in some countries, that man’s sterilization influences the biological age. Therefore, it is used for rejuvenation of the aged men. The belief is probably connected with the change of hormonal work of the testicles after the intervention.
The surgical vasectomy is a simple operation if performed by the professional. It lasts for about 15-30 minutes and is normally performed with the local anesthesia in an outpatient setting (hospitalization is not required). At the request of the patient, it is possible to perform the operation with the general anesthesia (anesthesia). An opening in your scrotum is made and the segment of vas deferens is removed. The ends of are tied and stitched and so is the opening of the scrotum after the vas deferens are put back. Thus, a barrier that prevents the sperm reaching the ejaculate is formed. The sperm produced by the testicles is absorbed by the tissues without any harm to the body. And the quantity of semen remains the same.
Disadvantages of Vasectomy
However, it is still an operation, which interferes the natural processes of the human body, so there are certain disadvantages. Luckily, the disadvantages are temporary:
- The method is almost permanent (in case you change your mind in 10 years after the operation)
- Short-term pain/discomfort after surgery.
- Within 3 months after the operation, it is necessary to use the additional methods of contraception.
- The risks and side effects associated with surgery, especially when using general anesthesia.
- It does not protect against HIV and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
- Spontaneous resumption of patency of the vas deferens (0,1% probability). Just as in the case of female surgical sterilization, before deciding on vasectomy should carefully weigh the pros and cons.
It is worth mentioning, that 3% to 15% of post-vasectomy patients suffer from the post-vasectomy pain syndrome, which is characterized by pains in testicles, that may last for years and occur spontaneously.
Vasectomy reversal: in case you change your mind
Vasectomy reversal is called Vasovasostomy. Normally the spinal or general anesthesia is used in performing the operation.The restoring of the vas deferens take more time than removing a segment of it, but normally you may go home the same day. The restoration period is also longer – you may get back to the normal sexual life in 3 weeks after the operation.
The success of the vasectomy reversal depends on several factors, the most important of which is the time passed after the vasectomy. Each year the chance of fertility resumption decreases by 6-10%. Which means that in 10 years after the vasectomy there will be a 30 to 0% of chance that you will be fertile. However, the operation carried withing the 3 years after the vasectomy, gives you 50%-65% chance to become a father.
It is very important that the method allows to restore the fertility of the man during the first 5 years after surgery, in later terms after a vasectomy the body ceases to produce full-fledged spermatozoids. Your doctor has to make sure you were not infertile before the vasectomy and your body does not yet produce the antibodies to the spermatozoids.
Vasectomy and prostate cancer
In 1993, the American scientists found out that men who went through a vasectomy have the increased risk of prostate cancer. Lately, however, no biological proof link was found between the rates of the disease and the vasectomy surgery.
The studies on the issue are still in progress and the researchers from Harvard university studied the data obtained at inspection of about 50 thousand men within 24 years.
According to the results of research, in those who had a vasectomy (the operation resulting in sterility at preservation of sexual functions), the probability of development of a prostate cancer is 10 percent higher than in other men. However, there are too many factors, that can not be excluded from the research and may influence the development of cancer cells, as the prostate cancer is the most widespread form of cancer in men: it is diagnosed in 40 thousand people in Britain every year. Thus, the link between prostate cancer and precedent vasectomy in a controversial issue.
Professor Malcolm Mason from Cancer Research UK non-profit organization notes, that vasectomy is still an important contraception method. However before taking such step, the man should consult the experts and consider the pros and cons.
The deferentectomy gained special popularity in Britain: every sixth British man goes through vasectomy as a contraception method.
Safer than operation
In general the vasectomy is considered to be a safe operation, however sometimes there are serious consequences, including various infections, hematomas and the mentioned above testicle pain. Today the vasectomy is the only contraceptive for men besides condoms. However, scientists are sure that soon this function will be already carried out by common pills. The recent innovation, which is still being developed in the field, is so-called “chemical vasectomy”.
In some countries, the vasectomy is legal at the mature age (after 35 in Russia) and under certain conditions (having more than two children). These limitations are mainly connected to the birth rates in the country. Rumors say that vasectomy is a promoted way to fight the overpopulation of the world, thus in some countries it is even made for free! The birth control remains an open issue of the modern world and science is looking for the best way to control the quantity of Earth population, finding the new and safe ways. Perhaps, in 20 years vasectomy will become a cruel archaism of our days, but it is still one of the best options that both partners may now consider as one of the safest and most secure methods of contraception.