Scalpel Free Vasectomy

Scalpel Free Vasectomy
Vasectomy is the name given to the operation which makes men infertile by blocking sperm from getting into the seminal fluid during ejaculation. It is the most efficient form of permanent male contraception available with a failure rate of less the 0.1%. After a vasectomy your testes will continue to produce sperm and the male hormone testosterone normally, so your sex drive and libido are unaltered. As the sperm will be unable to exit through the vas tubes, they will be reabsorbed (and recycled) by the body in the same process that naturally occurs to any unused sperm. There is no link between vasectomy and increased rates of heart disease, male menopause, cancer of the testes or prostate. The Scalpel Free Vasectomy technique (SFV) or no scalpel vasectomy (NSV) is a minimally invasive technique used to perform a vasectomy. It differs from traditional vasectomy, which was usually performed in hospital under a general anaesthetic and required two incisions on either side of the scrotum. SFV has lower rates of complications such as pain, infection or bleeding and is now the preferred method of performing a vasectomy. It is a simple procedure (but still better performed by doctors with training than DIY!) that can be performed in the clinic with special equipment under local anaesthetic and oral sedation. Overall, there is minimal discomfort and recovery is faster compared to traditional vasectomy. 

Vasectomy should be considered permanent as reversal procedures are expensive and not always successful.

The Scalpel Free Vasectomy Procedure

During a scalpel free vasectomy procedure local anaesthetic is used in the skin in front of the scrotum. There are no injections or cuts into the testes. Using special instruments, both vas tubes are located and gently isolated from the rest of scrotal structures.

A single small opening, ~5mm in size is made in the centre of the scrotum below the penis without using a blade. This small opening will close rapidly and heal without needing stitches. A loop of the vas is then brought through the opening and snipped. The testicular end is left open (Open-ended technique) whilst the other end is sealed internally. A barrier of internal tissue is then created (fascial interposition) to prevent the ends re-joining before returning the vas to its normal position within the scrotum. The procedure is then repeated on the other side. Once the incision heals there will be a small scar that will fade over time.

Overall, there is very little discomfort and recovery is faster compared to traditional vasectomy. It is recommended that men rest and take it easy for the first couple of days after vasectomy. Sexual activity, using another form of contraception, can resume within a few of days of a vasectomy, when you feel up to it (pun intended).
Men are not immediately sterile after the operation. There can be sperm in the semen for many months after the operation (rarely up to 18 months). You need to continue to use contraception until postoperative sperm tests have been carried out and you have at least one satisfactory sperm test showing no more live (motile) sperm.

Andrology Australia Fact Sheet