Vasectomy is an operation designed to tie off both of the tubes, known as vas deferens, that carry sperm. It causes permanent infertility, or inability to father children, in males.
Who is a candidate for the procedure?
Vasectomy is an effective form of sterilization for males. It can be offered to any man who wishes to be sterilized, with the understanding that it is intended to be complete and irreversible. The procedure can be reversed, but reversal does not always work, and it is an expensive and difficult operation.
How is the procedure performed?
Vasectomy is performed with local "numbing" medicine in the doctor's office. A urologist does the procedure in most cases. A urologist is a doctor that specializes in treating conditions of the male reproductive and urinary systems. Numbing medicine is injected under the skin of the scrotum just above the testicle on both sides. The procedure is usually done through a small incision in the scrotum. A "no-scalpel" vasectomy uses just a small puncture in the scrotum.
The male tubes that carry sperm are identified. The tubes are then cut or interrupted by various methods. This may or may not involve removing a section of the tubes.