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If you need a vasectomy, it’s good to know that the doctors and specialists at MaineHealth offer advanced and minimally invasive surgery. At MaineHealth, our specialists provide safe and effective vasectomies on an outpatient basis. Our doctors offer the most up-to-date vasectomy services.

What is a vasectomy?

A vasectomy is minor surgery that cuts or blocks the tubes that carry sperm. Sperm do not reach the semen that is ejaculated during sex. A vasectomy is a highly effective form of birth control for men. An egg cannot be fertilized when there is no sperm. More than a half-million American men choose vasectomies each year for birth control. Vasectomies usually are covered by medical insurance.

During and after a vasectomy

  • During a vasectomy, a local anesthetic is injected into the area. Patients also may be given medication to make them sleepy and relaxed.

  • With a traditional vasectomy, your doctor makes one or two small openings in your scrotum. Two tubes are cut and sealed.

  • Patients can have a traditional vasectomy or a no-scalpel vasectomy that uses a small clamp instead of a scalpel to cut the skin of the scrotum. There is less bleeding and a smaller hole in the skin.

  • Vasectomies take about 20 minutes to 30 minutes.

  • Expect swelling after the surgery, lie on your back, and apply cold packs to the area.

  • Men with office jobs that do not require physical activity can return to work after one or two days. Avoid heavy lifting.

A vasectomy is not effective right away

After a vasectomy, you must use birth control and have a semen sample tested to show a zero sperm count. It usually takes several months to have a zero sperm count after a vasectomy.