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Vasectomy

Underlying Problem Requiring a Vasectomy:
A vasectomy is a form of male sterilization. It is an out-patient procedure that results in a 99 percent success rate in the first few months after the procedure. While it continues to be one of the most effective forms of birth control after this initial period, its failure rates depend upon the doctor\'s experience and the technique used.

While a vasectomy is usually reversible, it is considered to be a \"permanent\" decision and should be used by men who do not intent to father (more) children. For example, this may be because they already have children, because they do not want to have children, or because they have concerns about passing on a genetic disease or disability.

Treatment:
The main goal of the vasectomy procedure is to create a barrier that stops sperm from traveling through the vas deferens in order to fertilize an egg during sexual intercourse. The vas deferens is the tube that carries the sperm from the testicle to mix with seminal fluids before ejaculation.

There are a couple of approaches to performing a vasectomy, and most are a non- or minimally-invasive procedure for which the patient is given a local anesthetic. A small hole is made in the scrotum, and the vas deferens is brought through this opening so it can be cut. The two new ends will then be clamped, tied, or cauterized before being replaced into the scrotum. This process is repeated on both sides to complete the vasectomy.

Recovery from a Vasectomy:
The local anesthetic will begin to wear off approximately an hour after the procedure. A mild pain reliever may be needed. The patient should rest and elevate his feet for the first two or three days. An ice pack can be applied to the scrotum throughout the first day in order to lessen the swelling. In addition, snug cotton underwear or an athletic supporter may be helpful in the first week. Once the recovery period is over, the doctor will examine the semen to check for sperm to ensure that the vasectomy was successful.

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