Fertility Planning

Take control of your fertility.

Vasectomy is the most effective form of contraception that we can offer a couple.

When it comes to Fertility Planning and vasectomies, let’s just say I know my stuff. I’m not just a Vasectomy Surgeon; I’m also a Vasectomy Trainer with more than 400 vasectomy procedures under my belt so  you can trust that you’re in really good hands.

I get it, the NHS offers vasectomies, but those waiting lists can feel like they go on forever. That’s why I’m here to offer you a quicker, quality alternative in Fertility Planning. No long waits, just straightforward, professional care when you need it.

I'm unsure about having a vasectomy - I've never had one before!

Talk me through a vasectomy.

Don’t panic.

It’s good to consider these things without rushing in.

I can offer you and your partner a face to face consultation in my clinic in Whitehead to explore your options.

We can discuss where you are now with your fertility, and where you want to be. I’ll ask you a few questions about your health and wellbeing, and offer you a routine physical examination, and also a brief ultrasound examination.

I’ll be able to quickly tell you how suitable you’ll be for a vasectomy, and we can then discuss the specifics of what the procedure would look like for you.

I am a strong believer in the importance of a good consent process for any surgical procedure, so once I have explained everything to you, answered your questions, and given you some printed information, I will give you a a minimum of a two week ‘cooling off period’ to go away and think about things before the vasectomy procedure

That is what most men say after their vasectomy. It’s normal to be concerned and worried beforehand, but most men walk out of my room pleasantly surprised by how simple and straightforward it was.

Firstly, I put you at your ease, and make sure that you’re as comfortable as possible. We even provide a hot water bottle. I will use a tiny needle with a little bit of local anaesthetic liquid to numb the area just below the penis, and you’ll feel discomfort into both of your flanks for about 10 seconds, and then things will quickly go numb, and you shouldn’t feel any more pain during the procedure..

Secondly, I’ll clean the area with antiseptic liquid and get you ready for the procedure. It’s important that we keep everything clean and we use sterile single use specialist equipment each time.

Thirdly, I’ll make a tiny nick in the numbed skin using an electrical device, which will allow access to each of the vas tubes which carry the sperm, and I’ll use the electrical equipment to dry up the tubes, cut them, separate the ends and dry up any bleeding.

Once I’m happy that everything has been completed, I’ll put the tubes away, and the wound will close over itself – no stitches or patches required. Most men will have difficulty finding a scar after a few months.

  • You can expect to be a bit sore and swollen for a few days afterwards, so it’s usually wise to book a few days off work – I usually advise four days off if you can.
  • Bruising and swelling up to the size of an existing testicle can be expected, so put your feet up and rest, and it’s a good idea to use an ice pack in a towel in your pants for a few minutes at a time too.
  • I recommend keeping things dry for 48 hours after your surgery, then having a gentle shower afterwards.
  • It’s normal to need some paracetamol or ibuprofen after the surgery – even if you’re not too sore, I recommend taking regular pain relief for at least the first 48 hours.
  • Most pain should be settled by two weeks after the procedure.
  • You can return to normal activity as your body allows, and it’s ok to return to sex whenever you’re ready. If you notice a bit of blood in your semen the first couple of times, don’t worry, this can be normal.
  • Remember – ideally 30 ejaculations before sending your postal sample!

It’s important to note that a Vasectomy is a permanent procedure – if it’s successful then you’re not going to be able to father a child in the future. This is something which should not be entered into lightly without plenty of consideration. It’s important to discuss this with your partner, and to have enough time to consider this decision, with all the information in front of you, and not to feel pressured – that’s why I feel it’s important for you to have a two week cooling off period between our first consultation and having the surgery to allow you to consider these things.

Some men change their minds, or sometimes their partners change their minds, and that is not a problem – I want to make sure that you get the surgery that suits you, your family and your needs the best.

Is it risky?

Local anaesthetic vasectomy is usually a very safe and uneventful procedure; but as with all surgical procedures there are risks which we need to consider, which will happen even with our best efforts to prevent them.

1 in a 100 men will need treatment for a wound infection. We use sterile equipment and aseptic techniques to try and prevent this, but if there is swelling and pain which starts several days after the procedure, speak to your GP, as antibiotics may be needed.

1 in a 100 men will have a large collection of blood in their scrotum, and may need to have an emergency procedure in hospital to fix this. It’s normal to have some swelling and bruising after a vasectomy, up to the size of an existing testicle, but any larger than this needs seen in your local Emergency Department urgently. Ice packs and rest will help prevent this.

1-2 in a 100 men will have pain that is slow to settle. Most men will have pain which lasts for a couple of weeks then subsides; a small number of men will have pain which lasts for weeks into months; a tiny number of men will have pain which lasts longer than months. If you can take regular pain relief for the first 48 hours after the procedure you are less likely to have long term pain.

1 in 100 men will develop a lump at the end of the tube due to a backlog of sperm, and sometimes this can be tender. Ibuprofen or similar medication usually helps this, and your GP will be able to advise.

There is about a 1 in 4000 chance that you take unwell during the procedure and need to be transported to hospital for medical help for an unforeseen reason, and a 1 in 10,000 risk that one of your testicles gets damaged during the procedure;  we do our best to avoid these very rare complications, but it’s important to know about them to help you make a decision about the procedure.

Does it work?

Vasectomy is the most effective form of contraception that we can offer a couple.

Following a successful procedure, the chances of you becoming fertile again at some stage during your life are one in 2000, which is very low.

How do we get to that point?

  • After a vasectomy, there are still many millions of live sperm left behind! 
  • We recommend at least 30 ejaculations in the months after a procedure to ensure that these are cleared. 
  • After four months, you will receive a postal semen test kit from Acculabs which you must return for testing.
  • Four out of five men will get the all clear after this sample, but one out of five men will need a single sample repeated after a further three months. 
  • Between the first and second samples, 99% of men will have no live sperm in their sample and will be infertile.
  • Unfortunately, 1 out of 100 men will still have live sperm, and may need a repeat vasectomy. 
  • It is important to know that you may still be fertile for some weeks after your vasectomy! 
  • Until you get the all clear you should continue to use precautions. 
  • If you don’t return a semen sample then we can’t confirm that your vasectomy has been successful.

No referrals, no problem.

I’m more than happy to see you without a referral letter, making the process even smoother for you.

So there you have it. At Minor Surgery NI, your health and comfort are at the heart of what I do. Contact me, and let’s get you feeling better as soon as possible.