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Is vasectomy the right method for me?

There are a number of factors you should consider to determine whether vasectomy is the right contraceptive method for you. As with any contraception, you should first talk to your doctor or a counselor at your local clinic or hospital before seriously considering vasectomy. This is particularly important for both male and female sterilization, since the effects are meant to be permanent.

Vasectomy may be an effective method for you

If any of the following is true:
  • You and your partner have all the children you ever want to have.
  • You and your partner do not want to have children and you cannot or do not want to use temporary methods of family planning.
  • You want a permanent, one-time method.
  • You (or your partner) have a medical condition that limits the use of other family planning methods.
  • You want to enjoy sex without fear of pregnancy.

Vasectomy may not be an effective method for you

If any of the following is true:
  • You are at risk of exposure to, or transmission of, sexually transmitted infections, including HIV infection. Used alone, vasectomy does not provide protection against these infections.
  • You have conditions that are precautions for elective surgery, such as heart disease, uncontrolled diabetes, bleeding disorders, large hydrocele, or a local pathological condition. These conditions should be treated or managed before vasectomy is performed.
  • You are young.
  • You have few or no children.
  • You feel that you are being pressured by your partner, a relative, or a family planning counselor.
  • Your marriage or your relationship with your partner is not stable.
  • You think that vasectomy may help solve an emotional, marital, or sexual problem.
  • You think there's a chance you would want to have children if your circumstances were to change (for example, if your current relationship ended and your new partner wanted a child, if one or more of your children died, or if your income suddenly improved a great deal).
  • You think vasectomy reversal is a possibility for you-in case you change your mind after the operation-or you are counting on being able to store your sperm in case you change your mind.
  • You are temporarily involved in a stressful situation.
  • Your partner does not think you should have a vasectomy.

Vasectomy is not an effective method for you

If either of the following is true:
  • You want to have more children.
  • You don't feel that you understand how vasectomy will affect you.

For more information about this method, see Vasectomy: Answers to Your Questions.


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