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Dispelling myths over vasectomy
A TOP Hampshire surgeon has moved to dispel myths surrounding a contraceptive procedure - to mark World Vasectomy day.
Despite concerns many men have about undergoing the operation, Richard Lockyer revealed that there are on average four vasectomies carried out by his team every week, on men of all ages.
With a failure rate of just one in 2,000 the procedure is the safest form of contraception, much more effective that female sterilisation.
Mr Lockyer said: “I think for many men the idea of having surgery ‘down there’ is the reason that puts them off and as a surgeon it is not natural to operate on someone who is not ill.
“That fear is often the reason for men not having it done, as well as the myth that they will have to have time off work because other forms of contraception that women can take, such as the injection or pill, can just be done at home and that’s it.
“But in reality a vasectomy does not mean lots of time off work for men and sometimes, if their job isn’t too physical, some men return to work the next day.”
These days the procedure is done under a local anaesthetic and is over within 30 minutes – meaning that the patient can be in and out of hospital within a couple of hours.
Despite fears and concerns of many men, Mr Lockyer says the risk of complications is very low and the surgery does not affect sex life.
And it is not just older men that are having vasectomies. Although much rarer among younger men, Mr Lockyer has done the procedure on men in their late 20s who have had two or three children and decided their family is complete.
Mr Lockyer said: “The most important thing about this procedure is that it should be regarded as irreversible. While there are procedures to reverse it, success rates are variable and not available on the NHS, unlike the vasectomy.”
n Men interested in finding out more about the procedure should contact their GP, who will be able to provide information on all the options available.
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