How a Vasectomy Works

Vasectomy is an extremely effective method of birth control. Around 500,000 of these male sterilization procedures are performed each year in the United States, but many men are hesitant about signing up for a surgical procedure involving their genitals.

Getting a vasectomy is safe, and most procedures take less than half an hour in the office. But it is a permanent form of birth control, which means you should be 100% sure you don’t want to have children in the future.

If you’re considering getting a vasectomy, it’s time to learn more about how the process works. Advanced Urology, with offices in Los Angeles, Redondo Beach, and Culver City, California, is proud to bring the latest technology and highest quality of care to our patients, offering fast, safe, no-scalpel vasectomy procedures for men of all ages.

Understanding your anatomy

Sperm are male reproductive cells. These microscopic cells are created in your testicles. Men have two testicles, and they’re located in a sac of skin called the scrotum. Sperm mix with semen via two tubes called the vas deferens that connect your scrotum to the rest of your body. 

The vas deferens tubes carry sperm from your testicles, where it’s combined with other fluids. Your testicles store millions of sperm cells, but sperm only make up 5-10% of seminal fluid. When you ejaculate, semen and sperm exit your body through your urethra and penis. If the ejaculate enters a woman’s reproductive system, it can fertilize an egg, resulting in pregnancy.

Vasectomy is a surgical procedure that cuts or blocks the vas deferens tubes. The procedure stops sperm from combining with semen, so you’re no longer fertile. It doesn’t affect your sex drive or the way ejacualtion feels.

What happens during a vasectomy

At Advanced Urology, we perform vasectomies in an outpatient setting. We start by administering local anesthesia to numb your scrotum, then your doctor makes a small puncture in the skin to reach the vas deferens.

The doctor gently accesses each vas deferens tube and seals it by tying, cutting, or cauterization. The tubes are replaced, and your vasectomy is complete. The puncture doesn’t require a scalpel, and it’s so small that there’s no need for stitches after the procedure is over.

You can walk immediately after your vasectomy, and you can go home as soon as it’s over. Most men don’t feel any pain during the procedure, although some report feeling a tugging or pulling sensation.

Life after vasectomy

Once your vasectomy is over, sperm can’t reach seminal fluid anymore — but that doesn’t mean you can stop using other forms of birth control right away. Your sperm count gradually declines over the next few months, and you should continue using birth control, like condoms.

Our team performs regular male fertility testing to evaluate your sperm count after vasectomy, and you can stop using other birth control methods when your results show that you’re no longer fertile. You’ll usually be infertile about two months after surgery or after 20 ejaculations.

Immediately following your vasectomy, you may experience mild to moderate pain, swelling, or bruising. Any side effects should fade within a few days, and our team can recommend pain relievers to make you more comfortable.

Most men can return to work within a few days after getting a vasectomy. You should wait about one week before returning to vigorous activity, like working out and having sex.

Interested in a safe, permanent form of birth control that’s nearly 100% effective? A vasectomy could be right for you. Call the Advanced Urology office nearest you, send us a message, or request an appointment online to learn more.

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