No Scalpel Vasectomies at St Thomas Health Centre
Available: You can get an appointment now for a vasectomy within 3 months
Local: At St Thomas Health Centre. Run by a local general practitioner for Exeter patients
Convenient: Procedure out of normal working hours. Minimal disruption to your job
Advantages of No-Scalpel Vasectomy over conventional methods:
- Less discomfort
- One small opening in the skin instead of two incisions
- Faster procedure
- Faster recovery
- Less chance of bleeding and other complications
- Just as effective
How Can I Be Sure I Want a Vasectomy?
Be absolutely sure you don't want to father a child under any circumstances. Talk to your partner; it's essential to make the decision together. Consider other kinds of birth control as well. A vasectomy might not be right for you if you are very young, your current relationship is not stable, you are having the vasectomy just to please your partner, or if you are under a lot of stress.
Well, I am not very young, so that's one anyway!
What is different about a no-scalpel vasectomy?
No-scalpel vasectomy differs from a conventional vasectomy in a number of ways. Instead of two cuts the doctor makes one tiny opening with a special instrument. The "tubes" are then blocked using a cautery method. There is very little bleeding and no stitches are needed.
The no-scalpel vasectomy was invented by a Chinese surgeon and is used throughout China. It was introduced in the United States in 1988 where it is now the preferred method because of its low complication rate. Dr Watson, a St Thomas general practitioner, is fully trained and accredited to perform the no-scalpel vasectomy.
Is no-scalpel vasectomy safe?
Vasectomy in general is safe and simple. Vasectomy is an operation and all surgery has some risks such as bleeding, bruising, or infection. However, serious problems are very rare; less than 1 in 100 cases have even a minor problem.
Does no-scalpel vasectomy work?
Yes. It is estimated that after a vasectomy there is less than 1 in 2000 chance that a man's partner will become pregnant. This is ten times more reliable than if your wife had a sterilisation operation.
Do I need a referral?
Yes. Please consult your GP first. Provided there is no medical reason would make it unwise or unsafe to have a vasectomy your GP will refer you to our clinic.
How long will the no-scalpel vasectomy procedure take?
You come to see us for a consultation at which we explain the procedure and answer your questions. Your partner does not have to attend with you but it may be helpful if she does. You then book in for the procedure to be done on another day.
On average the procedure takes about 10 minutes but you will be at the surgery about 30 minutes in all. You should bring someone with you to drive you home afterwards.
"Bring Jim!" Bloody sexism that is!
Will it hurt?
Before the vasectomy if you feel especially nervous, we can give you a mild sedative to be taken an hour beforehand to relax you. When the local anaesthetic is injected into the skin of the scrotum, you will feel some discomfort but as soon as it takes effect, you should feel no pain. Afterwards you may be sore for a couple of days and you might want to take a mild painkiller. But the discomfort is usually much less with the no-scalpel technique because there is less injury. Also there are no stitches. You will be provided with complete instructions about what to do after surgery.
How soon can I go back to work?
You should not do heavy physical labour for at least 48 hours after your vasectomy. If your job doesn't involve this kind of work, you can go back to work sooner.
Will vasectomy change me sexually?
The only thing that will change is that you will not be able to make your partner pregnant. Your body will continue to produce the hormones that make you a man. You will have the same amount of semen. Vasectomy won't change your beard, your muscles, your sex drive, your erections or your climaxes. And you won't sing soprano! Some men say that without the worry of accidental pregnancy and the bother of other birth control methods, sex is more relaxed and enjoyable than before.
Will I be sterile right away?
No. After a vasectomy there are always some active sperm left in your system. It takes about 20 ejaculations to clear them. You and your partner should use some other form of birth control until two samples of your semen have been tested and confirmed free of sperm,
When can I start having sex again?
As soon as you are comfortable, but remember to use some other
kind of birth control until you have received the letter to say that you
Well, that is less comforting. I might need a sedative and I will no longer be able to sing soprano.
Does vasectomy cause any medical problems?
Medical experts, including special panels convened by the World Health Organisation, have concluded that vasectomy is a safe procedure. A number of studies have examined the long term health effects of vasectomy and the research evidence continues to be reassuring and suggests that vasectomized men are no more likely than other men to develop heart disease, cancer or other illnesses.
Will it protect me from getting or passing on STDs or AIDS?
No. It will only prevent you from making your partner pregnant. If you or your partner have a sexual disease, or have more than one sexual partner, the best way to protect yourself and your partner is to use a condom.
Can a no-scalpel vasectomy be reversed?
No more than any other vasectomy procedure. Remember that vasectomy, especially by the no-scalpel method is quick, convenient and causes very little discomfort but vasectomies should be considered permanent. Reversal operations are expensive and often unsuccessful. If you are thinking about reversal perhaps vasectomy is not right for you.
To book an appointment, please see your GP.
Well, I had thought about freezing something, although that was more for future practical jokes than anything else.
I find it very hard too understand that there are poeple out there dim enough to think that burning through their scrotum (oh GOD!) will stop them from contracting AIDS and I wonder if we should tell them. Perhaps they deserve to be caught out?