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Frequently asked questions.

Dr Blanks aims at providing brilliant care and excellent outcomes for its patients. We aim for outstanding results and prioritise the safety and comfort of men choosing to have their vasectomy at their nearest Dr Blanks clinic.

Our aim, when compiling this FAQ sheet, is to provide a thorough and extensive informative resource for men and women considering their contraceptive options and the vasectomy procedure.

How common is the vasectomy procedure?

Vasectomy is a very popular procedure. About 1 in 4 men over the age of 40 have had a vasectomy in Australia. Approximately 25,000 to 30,000 men choose to have the procedure in Australia, every year.

What is a vasectomy?

A vasectomy is a simple, minimally invasive, surgical procedure only involving a small segment (approximately 1cm) of tubing (vas deferens) on both the left and right side of the scrotum. Its purpose is to only remove the sperm from a man’s ejaculate so he can have sex without the risk of pregnancy. Remember, a vasectomy does not involve your penis or testicles, or their function. It only redirects the flow of sperm stopping unwanted pregnancy. Your erections, orgasms and ejaculations will look, and feel, the same as they did before your procedure.

What are the other contraceptive options currently available for couples today?

Unfortunately, most of the contraceptive burden and responsibility today still falls on women. The issue of contraception can often put unnecessary strain and stress on many relationships.

Most contraceptive options for women consist of synthetic hormonal options including combined oestrogen and progesterone pills, progesterone only pills, depo progesterone injections, hormonal plastic rod implants into the woman’s arm, vaginal hormonal rings and intrauterine devices (either copper or hormonal). Non-hormonal contraceptives include condoms and diaphragms. Many of the hormonal options can cause unwanted side effects for women including heavy or light periods, irregular bleeding or spotting, painful periods, or delays in a return of a normal period after stopping some of the options. Other unwanted side effects may include nausea, abdominal pains, breast tenderness, rashes, skin changes, weight changes, decreased libido, vaginitis, headaches or mood changes including depression.

Women should also have a discussion with their doctors to see if their contraceptives have any chemical interactions with other medications that they may be taking or new medications they are commencing. Some serious risks can also exist with these contraceptive options that couples should be aware of including risk for stroke, heart attack, clots, decreased bone mineral density and certain cancers. We encourage you to speak to your GP about these risks.

For more information on contraception for women read our ‘info for women’ section here

In what situations should my partner not be taking certain contraceptives and consult their doctor immediately?

There are women in the community that should not be taking certain contraceptives as they may pose an unacceptable risk to their health and wellbeing. Dr Blanks has compiled the key information to help you and your partner have an informed discussion with your General Practitioner before making any changes. 

For more information on female contraceptives - Click here

Will a vasectomy hurt?

You will naturally experience a sting/pinch in your scrotum when you receive the numbing injection. This will only last for approx 5 seconds. Breathe. Most men after the injection rate the sting a 1 or 2 out of 10 (where 0 is no pain and 10 is severe pain). Within approximately 1 minute your scrotum will go completely numb and you will feel no pain. Only when the Doctor confirms that you feel numb does the procedure commence.

Importantly the procedure DOES NOT involve any injections into your
testicles or your penis. We use an extremely fine needle to inject a small amount of local anesthetic to a small segment of skin only over your scrotum that covers the tubes (vasa deferentia). The segment of skin that is numbed is found at a point midway between the base of the penis and the top of the testicles.

The procedure will only begin once your doctor has confirmed that you feel no pain. It is normal to feel some tugging or pressure sensations during the procedure.

On occasion, some patients may need more anaesthetic for the area to be numb. Your doctor will be in constant communication with you to ensure that your optimal comfort is maintained, and that the appropriate amount of anaesthetic is administered for your presentation. You are also encouraged to communicate with the doctor and treating team about any discomfort you may be feeling at any point before, during, or after the procedure. Dr Blanks maintains patient comfort and safety as our priority, and have ensured that thorough steps are in place achieve your optimal care and comfort for your procedure.

Vasectomies through the ages

Just like medical misinformation and inaccuracies exist in different forms, vasectomies have also been susceptible to misinformation over their long history, mainly by non-evidence based sources that are not scientifically grounded or medically trained. Approximately 25,000 men have a vasectomy in Australia every year. Most men, at some point in their sexual lives, consider taking leadership on family planning and think about vasectomy after seeing some of the physical side effects and suffering their female partners endure with conventional hormone tablets, implants and injections. We will go into some key information about the procedure below.

Will a vasectomy lower libido, my masculinity, testosterone or cause erectile dysfunction?

No. A vasectomy does not affect sex drive, performance, your erection, testosterone levels or the quality of your orgasm. In fact, many couples report that their sex lives improve after their partner’s vasectomy as the stress of unwanted pregnancy has been removed.

Will a vasectomy affect my semen/ejaculate when I orgasm during sex? Will I still ejaculate when I orgasm?

You may rest assured that you will continue to ejaculate semen as you were before your procedure. There will be no visible difference to your ejaculate when you orgasm. Remember, semen and sperm are not the same thing. Sperm is a very small component of the semen (about 5%). Sperm is made in the testicles and is responsible for fertilising the egg in the female causing pregnancy. Semen, however, is the bulk of the fluid that you see when you ejaculate. Semen helps the sperm reach its end goal (the egg).

Most of the content of the semen you ejaculate is made in the seminal vesicles (about 70%), the prostate gland (about 25%) and a small portion in the bulbourethral glands (about 1%) which are all structures after your testicles on the anatomical highway. What you see when you ejaculate is the semen. Semen contains proteins, amino acids, phosphorus, potassium, calcium and zinc to name a few.

So, what happens to my sperm?

Your testicles will still continue to make sperm as before, the only difference is, it will be blocked from leaving the testicles and joining the rest of the semen when you ejaculate. Having a vasectomy does not change the colour, volume, texture or taste of your ejaculate. There is no visible difference to your semen at all when you ejaculate. The sperm produced in your testes will just get reabsorbed in the body as what already happens if you do not have sex or do not ejaculate for a while.

Will a vasectomy affect sex / testosterone levels?

Vasectomies will not affect your testosterone levels or your erections. A lingering question that some men have before taking the step for a vasectomy is how will the procedure affect their performance in the bedroom. The brilliant news is that a vasectomy will not negatively affect your sex life. Your sex drive is not affected because a vasectomy does not affect testosterone production. You still keep producing testosterone and sperm exactly like before. A vasectomy simply redirects your sperm only. Your testicles are not involved in the vasectomy procedure and continue to work as before producing most of your body’s testosterone. Therefore, there will be no physical change to your masculinity or to your body’s physiological processes. Your hair distribution will not change. Your muscle mass will not change. Your voice depth will not change. It does not affect your erections as a vasectomy does not involve the penile muscles or blood supply to the penis. Your semen when you ejaculate and the amount you ejaculate will look the same, and yes, it will even taste and feel the same.

How soon after the procedure can I have sex?

As soon as you feel comfortable, this may take a few days. We advise 1 week of no exertional activity eg jogging, cycling etc. that will aggravate or inflame the scrotal area. Remember, it takes 3 months AND at least 20 ejaculations for your tubes to clear any remaining sperm so you must keep using protection until you do your semen analysis (Dr Blanks will send your semen analysis request form to you in the mail).

Should I shave before my procedure with Dr Blanks?

If you prefer, you may shave the underside of the penis and all of the front and sides of your scrotum to allow your doctor clear access on the day. To make it easier for you, you may use a number 1 or 2 guard on an electric razor (to clear the bulk of your hair without catching the skin) before proceeding with your closer razor shave. If you are not comfortable doing this manscaping at home, Dr Blanks will use a special razor on the day that removes hair without causing any small cuts or nicks.

When can I go back to work, doc?

Most men who have an office occupation go back to work the next day. For our clients who do highly physical work and are involved in heavy lifting e.g. tradesmen we recommend light duties for at least 5 days after their procedure. Dr Blanks can prescribe a medical certificate if you actually prefer time off or need more flexibility around your work obligations. Sportsmen, triathletes, cyclists, we advise 7 to 10 days off training.

Most gentlemen the day after their procedure have 1 or 2 out of 10 discomfort (where 0 is no discomfort and 10 is the worst discomfort imaginable). It is not uncommon to be pain free either the next day. Even if you have no pain the next day, we advise all our clients to still stay conscious of your recent procedure. No deadlifts, cycling or any activities that causes your scrotum to jiggle around too much particularly in the first 7 days. This just allows you to have the most comfortable recovery possible.

Should I wear boxers, briefs or trunks after my procedure?

Dr Blanks advises to avoid wearing boxers for at least 5 days post your procedure and recommends well fitted, supportive briefs instead. We advise, particularly for the first few days after your procedure to wear well fitted, supportive, underwear. Remember, any day-to-day activities that cause your scrotum to move around too much, may increase this risk for preventable pain, bruising or bleeding. In summary, opt for those well fitted, tight undies for the first few days after your procedure.

What about running and cycling after my procedure? What can/can’t I do post my procedure?

Any activity that causes your scrotum to move around too much (or places unnecessary pressure through the scrotum) such as bike riding, running, dead lifts or swimming we advise that you avoid for 7 to 10 days. This is advice aims for a smooth recovery, minimizing the risk of needless pain, swelling and/or bruising. Because sexual activity often places pressure on the scrotum, we also advise you avoid this for at least 7 days. Remember you can go back to having erections and ejaculations immediately after your procedure, just do not place any pressure on your scrotum until you have fully recovered.

What about lifting after my procedure? How much can lift?

Dr Blanks advises avoided placing too much pressure through your hamstrings, quadriceps and buttocks for at least the first 5 to 7 days after your procedure. In the first 5 days avoid lifting objects (and babies!) heavier than 10 to 15kg. Walking is fine after your procedure, and light exercises can be commenced if you’re feeling well after 4 or 5 days. This advice is aimed at preventing any unnecessary and avoidable, bruising, bleeding or pain in the general area.

How should I sleep after my vasectomy?

For the first few nights post your procedure, we recommend just sleeping on your back. Remember, anything that places too much stress or pressure on your scrotum in the first several days post your procedure may increase the risk for a needless bruise or swelling.

What’s with the ice pack after the procedure?

Dr Blanks advises to apply an ice pack (e.g., a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a towel is a great option) for at least 4 hours after you’ve had your procedure. The icing reduces inflammation and minimises post operative pain. We advise that you apply the ice pack (where you see the dressing on the scrotum) for 20 minutes before taking a 20-minute break. Do this for at least 4 hours. Remember, the more ice that you can use that day after your procedure, the less chance of pain or swelling the following day.

Will I see blood in my stool / urine after my vasectomy?

No, vasectomies do not cause blood in the urine or stool. If you are experiencing bleeding in your stool or urine it is not due to your vasectomy and we advise that you speak with your GP immediately for investigation.

Can vasectomy cause prostate cancer or testicular cancer?

No. A vasectomy does not increase the risk of any cancers. Researches have conducted many studies on this subject.

Does “laser” vasectomy exist?

So called “laser vasectomy” does not exist.

Will a vasectomy affect urination?

No, you can go to the toilet normally after your vasectomy . Your bowel and bladder function are not affected.

Can a vasectomy be reversed?

Dr Blanks advises that if you’re already considering a reversal perhaps a vasectomy is not the best contraceptive option for you. You should consider a vasectomy a permanent and irreversible form of contraception. Vasectomy reversal procedures involve microsurgery in hospital, general anaesthetic and may not always successful.

If you have had a vasectomy in the past, and are now looking at reversing it click here

Does a vasectomy involve my testicles or penis?

No. There are two tubes running within the left and right side of your scrotum. These are the tubes responsible for transporting sperm to the outside world. These tubes and are called vasa deferentia (singular; Vas deferens). A vasectomy just involves a small segment of the vasa deferentia (less than 1cm). Rest assured, your testicles and your penis are not involved in a vasectomy procedure.

What about condoms?

Condoms are only 85% effective in stopping pregnancy with typical use. This means that approximately 18% of women still fall pregnant despite condoms, largely because the condoms are not used properly or can break. The condom failure rate with typical use sits around 14%.

Whilst different forms of contraception may suit women in different points in their lives, there are some situations where a woman should not be using such medications (refer to Dr Blanks Resource for women below) and discuss with your General Practitioner or Gynaecologist.

For more information on female contraceptives - Click here

Condoms, however, are the only form of contraception that, when used properly, protect against sexually transmissible infections (STIs) such as chlamydia, syphilis, HIV and gonorrhoea. So, if you have had a vasectomy, and are still at risk of transmitting or acquiring an STI, you must still use a condom.

Why is a vasectomy a good option?

Vasectomies are a quick, affordable and minimally invasive contraceptive procedure. They are also more effective than tubal ligation in women.

Also remember that the once off fee for your vasectomy will most likely be cheaper than the collective costs accumulated over time on other types of contraception such as medications and condoms.

A vasectomy is also one of the most effective forms of contraception when compared to all other contraceptives. Its failure rate sits at only 1 in 1000 or 0.1% so it is more effective than most other contraceptives like hormone and barrier methods with typical use. (Remember no form of contraception can be said to be 100% effective).

To put a vasectomy’s success rate into perspective with other contraceptive methods:

  • Tubal ligation failure rate in women is approximately 4 in 1000 and needs to be performed under general anesthetic in hospital.
  • The failure rate for the combined oral contraceptive pill (COCP) with perfect use is 3 in 1000 or 0.3% but for typical use by most women the failure rate increases to 90/1000 or 9%.
  • The failure rate of the progestogen only pill (POP) with typical use is 70/1000 or 7%.
  • The failure rate for hormone injection for women with typical use is 40/1000 or 4%.
  • The failure rate of the hormonal vaginal ring with typical use is 70/1000 or 7%.
  • The hormonal implant failure rate if inserted correctly into the woman’s arm is 1 in 6000 or 0.01%.

How safe is a vasectomy?

A vasectomy is a very safe, minimally invasive low risk procedure. Serious side effects are rare but still possible and it is important that you are informed of these risks before consenting for a vasectomy procedure. Scrotal hematoma (blood in the scrotum) requiring drainage has an overall risk of 1 in 1000. Infection risk after a vasectomy is about 2 in 100. Long term pain or tenderness requiring months or further intervention to resolve may occur in 1-2% of cases. Granuloma formation, formation of cysts, or reactions to internal sutures can also occur. Some men may have slow wound healing, develop anti-sperm antibodies, or experience negative reactions to the skin preparation, latex gloves, local anaesthetic and heat diathermy. Should any of these side effects, or negative outcomes occur, your doctor at Dr Blanks will fully support your recovery and management.

What if I feel nervous leading up to the procedure?

We understand that a vasectomy can be anxiety provoking for many men. Many men after the procedure describe the mental lead up to the procedure as actually more nerve racking than the procedure itself. Here at Dr Blanks we offer men who feel anxious the option of a tranquilising tablet an hour before their procedure or an anaesthetic inhaler as an alternative.

If you prefer to have these medications for your procedure, please make sure you contact the Dr Blanks clinics on 1800 252 657 in advance of your procedure to arrange this. This will allow you enough time for your pharmacist to supply you with the medication before your procedure date.

What will I expect on the day? What happens?

Your doctor will welcome you and make you feel comfortable. The doctor will also go through the consent form again with you in person that you would have received in your pre-consultation. This also serves as a good time to ask any final questions or flag any doubtful points.

After the doctor is satisfied that you understand all the components of the consent form you will be invited to sign. You will then escorted to the procedural suite. You will lie down on the bed and your doctor will then prepare the area using an antiseptic solution.

Once the preparation is complete you will receive a quick countdown before the local anaesthetic is introduced to the skin overlying the tubes within the scrotum. You will feel a sharp sting for a few seconds. Dr Blanks has asked hundreds of men to rate the sting from a scale 0 to 10 where 0 is no pain and 10 is the worst pain imaginable. Dr Blanks has found that most men reassuringly answer a 2 which is good news. Your doctor will then pause and allow at least a minute to ensure the anaesthetic reaches its full affect and numbs your scrotum. Once this has been achieved your procedure will then commence. You may chat to the doctor, listen to music or use your phone during the procedure.

If at any point you feel any discomfort during your procedure, let the Doctor know and he can assist in making the procedure more comfortable.

Can I eat and drink before my vasectomy?

On the day of your procedure you are encouraged to have your normal breakfast or lunch before your vasectomy. This is a minimally invasive procedure so you may have your breaky or lunch as usual.

Which vasectomy procedure is best?

The terms ‘scalpel’ vs ‘no-scalpel’ is the first major distinction you need to be aware of between two different types of vasectomies. The two terms (scalpel and no-scalpel) only relate to how the opening is made on the skin of your scrotum your procedure begins. The scalpel method (or traditional method) is when your Doctor opens the skin of the scrotum, to access the tubes, using a scalpel. At the end of the procedure (using this older method) there would usually be two incisions on either side of your scrotum that would need to be stitched closed.

The innovative ‘no-scalpel’ vasectomy (NSV) technique, allows for your procedure to completed through one micro-keyhole. The opening to the skin of your scrotum with NSV is made completely differently. Your Doctor uses a special hemostat forceps which (after the anaesthetic has been administered to the area and you are completely numb) makes a micro-keyhole or small puncture on the scrotal skin. Through this single keyhole, both sperm tubes (‘vasa deferentia’) are gently accessed, delivered, snipped, sealed and tied. Because the keyhole is so small (about 3mm) it heals rapidly. there is no need for external stitches on your scrotum to close the opening!

Dr Blanks practices the latest ‘no-scalpel’ vasectomy technique. The no-scalpel technique is superior to the traditional scalpel method. The evidence shows that it has lower rates of bleeding, hematoma and infection complications. It also results in less post-operative pain when your anaesthetic wears off (compared to the traditional scalpel method).  It also has a shorter operation time.  No-scalpel vasectomies have made these quick procedures hassle free and even safer for men.

Is there a difference is success rate/effectiveness between scalpel vs no scalpel vasectomies?

No. Remember that the ‘scalpel’ vs ‘no-scalpel’ terms only relate to how the opening is made on your scrotum (and not to the internal happenings once the opening is made) there is no difference in the success rate of stopping pregnancies for the two types of vasectomies because everything that happens after the opening is made to your tubes remains the same. Remember, no forms of contraception can be said to be 100% perfect, but vasectomies are virtually perfect, with an approximate failure rate of less than 1 in a 1000. They are far more effective than hormone pills and condoms at stopping pregnancy.

What happens with my results? How do I get them?

All vasectomies (scalpel vs no scalpel, open-ended vs close-ended) need to be tested 12 weeks (and at least 20 ejaculations) after the procedure to ensure that there is no more sperm in your semen. You need to allow the 12 weeks to pass AND have at least 20 ejaculations to allow all the sperm to flush out from the piping.

On the day of your procedure the doctor will give you your semen test kit that you’ll complete at home 12 weeks after your procedure. When your 12-week test date arrives, do your sample at home, firmly secure the cap onto the jar and fill in the jar’s label with your name, time of collection and date. Once you submit your sample at the designated pathology centre, your doctor will call you with the results s 2-3 days after. As per confidentiality protocols, results can only be discussed between you and the doctor.

The majority of men are ready to start using their vasectomy 12 weeks after their procedure after receiving a 0 sperm count in this semen. A minority of men (approximately 15% of men) are expected to still be showing sperm when they do their 12-week test. If you are still showing sperm at 12 weeks, you most likely need more time and ejaculations to flush out any residual sperm. You will therefore be invited to test again 4 weeks after your 12-week test to see that you have cleared all sperm and are ready to use your vasectomy. Please remember that for those 12 weeks after your procedure as you wait to do your test, you must continue to use alternative forms of contraception such as condoms or hormone contraception. Only when you receive clearance from your doctor after doing your semen test, may you start using your vasectomy. Congratulations.

Why Dr Blanks? Which vasectomy procedure is better?

Here at Dr Blanks your comfort and safety is our priority. We aim to offer a virtually painless, comfortable and gentle service employing the latest techniques of the no scalpel micro-keyhole procedure. Dr Blanks are leading vasectomy clinics with multiple locations performing vasectomies day-in day-out. We are dedicated to excellent patient outcomes and service. No referral from your GP is required to have your Dr Blanks vasectomy. We perform the procedure to a high quality and standard, safely under local anesthetic, removing the need for hospital admissions and additional hospital and anaesthetic fees.

Dr Blanks practises the

  • no scalpel,
  • fascial interpositional,
  • open ended/intramucosal cautery
  • no stitch vasectomy technique.

Our exclusive 1800 252 657 hotline connects you straight to a doctor dedicated to performing vasectomies who will answer all your questions and queries regarding the procedure.

At Dr Blanks we use a long and short dual acting local anaesthetic which means a fast acting anaesthetic for quick comfort and longer lasting after the procedure so you can drive home comfortably.

If some men feel particularly anxious, we offer an inhaled relaxant medication which also acts as an effective anaesthetic. Another option is taking a relaxant tablet an hour before your procedure such as a diazepam. If you choose the tablet option you will need a driver for the day. We aim at providing a premier service for men choosing to have a vasectomy.

What are the benefits of the no scalpel vasectomy technique?

  • Lower chance of bleeding.
  • Faster recovery and earlier return to work.
  • Less damage an inflammation to surrounding structures and tissues.
  • Lower complications rate.
  • Less pain after your procedure.

Should I pick the ‘open-ended’ or ‘close- ended’ technique for my no-scalpel vasectomy?

Brilliant! So, you have decided on the ‘no-scalpel’ vasectomy option (which is far superior and safer than the traditional scalpel vasectomy as it limits the chance of unnecessary bleeding, bruising, post-operative pain and infection).

Now your next consideration is to consider either the ‘open-ended’ or ‘closed-ended’ technique for your no-scalpel vasectomy.

When the doctor gets to both the left and right tubes (vasa deferentia), through the single micro- keyhole opening, he will snip both left and right tubes and also take a piece out (approximately 1cm) from both left and right tubes, so as to leave a gap between the ends.

Open ended technique: Means that the two tubes coming out from both testes (the two lower ends or ‘testicular ends’) are left completely open. The sperm therefore is allowed to continue to flow out and fall into the scrotum before being broken down by your body’s enzymes. The higher-up ends (or ‘prostatic ends’ are the ends that are completely ‘corked’ or sealed shut. We will go into the reasons why you may consider leaving these two ends open, shortly.

After the snip is made (and 1cm of tubing from your left and right vasa deferentia have been removed) 3 more things need to happen to reduce the chance that the tube endings reconnect again. The 3 things that your doctor will then do (after the snip itself) are added safeguards.

  1. Electrocautery: A hot tip diathermy probe seals the inner aspect of the tubes shut including the tips of the tubes. You do not feel this probe.
  2. Absorbable internal ties. As an added precaution, the ends that have been cauterised shut are then further tied off using absorbable internal ties which slowly dissolve over the following 2 weeks.
  3. Both the open ends (testicular ends coming out from the testes) and sealed (top ends) are then buried in different anatomical planes using a dissolvable thread. This step is called ‘fascial interposition.’ Facial interposition is like putting an extra ‘glove’ or tissue barrier/sheath from your spermatic chord between the top and bottom ends, so they cannot meet and reconnect.

Closed ended technique: Means that all 4 endings from the snipped left and right vasa deferentia (both the 2 testicular ends and the 2 prostatic ends) are ‘corked’ or sealed completely shut using the 3 safe guards mentioned above (electrocautery, absorbable internal ties and fascial interposition). With this option, there are no endings left open.

Which is ‘better’ between open-ended vs close ended?

The whole reason we even talk about ‘open-ended’ vs ‘close ended’ relates to addressing a very rare phenomenon called “post vasectomy pain syndrome” (PVPS).  PVPS is a rare prolonged pain/ache phenomenon that less than 1 in 100 men have described after their procedure that may last for several weeks/months and needs ongoing pain medications to treat it. The academic debate between the ‘open-ended’ vs ‘close-ended’ method has been ongoing for the last 4 decades. Dr Blanks’ review of the medical literature has determined that both options are acceptable for use in Australia.

The ‘open-ended’ technique has been associated with a less chance of sudden sperm ‘back pressure’ or epididymal congestion (which is one of the suspected causes of PVPS). It also makes a vasectomy reversal easier (should you change your mind in the future).  Open ended vasectomies may possibly have a slightly higher failure rate (conceivably due to the fact that instead of both the ‘entrance’ and ‘exit doors’ being locked, the exit door from the testes remains open and the sperm may find a way to get out.

Having said all this, open-ended vasectomies may lead to ‘sperm granuloma’ formation. Sperm granulomas are hard immune response lumps that occur where the sperm is leaking out from the testicular end in ‘open-ended’ vasectomies. The immune system, seeing the sperm leaking out from the open vas, forms hard lumps around the leaking sperm called granulomas. Most often these granulomas are completely harmless and painless, but rarely the medical literature has reported that they can be painful too. Regardless, granuloma lumps, eventually ‘plug’ or close an ‘open-ended’ vasectomy, it just happens over a longer period of time, rather than the sudden close that happens during a close ended procedure.

In short, both methods are pretty comparable. If you prefer one or the other let Dr Blanks know on the day.

Who invented the vasectomy procedure?

Whilst the vas deferens was first mentioned by the Ancient Greek physician, Rufus of Ephesus late in the 1st century AD, it was Reginald Harrison in London who performed the first vasectomy in 1893. It was not until the second world war that vasectomy was finally regarded as an effective method for birth control. The first national vasectomy program was launched in India in 1954. The no-scalpel vasectomy technique was pioneered in 1974 by Dr Li Shungiang in the Sichuan province of China. Dr Shungiang would go on to teach the technique to visiting doctors from overseas. The first no-scalpel vasectomy was performed in the US in 1985 and by 1989 the procedure was being practised in Australia.

Do all vasectomies take 3 months to work?

All patients that complete their vasectomies in Australia, must have their semen tested at 3 months AND 20-30 ejaculations after their procedure, as per the Australian Safety and Efficacy Register of New Interventional Procedures-Surgical (ASERNIP-S) guidelines. You must allow at least 3 months to pass AND have at least 20 ejaculations before most vasectomies begin working. This is to ensure that all sperm residing in the vasa deferentia are flushed out from your system. By 3 months, the majority of men (85-90%) will pass their semen test and can start using their vasectomy. A minority of men (10-15%) will still be showing sperm at 3 months. At this point these men will need to test again 4 weeks later as per the ASERNIP-S guidelines. A very small number of men may take up to 7 months to clear all sperm. If you continue to show sperm 7 months after your procedure, a second investigative procedure under general anaesthesia may be required to explore the cause of this. Remember, no form of contraception that exists can be said to be 100% perfect. Typically 1 in 10 people using hormone based contraceptives will have an unwanted pregnancy, almost 1 in 5 using condoms will have an unwanted pregnancy, and 1 in 5 using the withdrawal method will have an accidental pregnancy. Tubal ligation in women has a typical failure rate of 1 in 1000. An estimated 1 in 2000 vasectomies fail. Despite dividing the two ends of the vas deferens, the ends may rejoin (recanalisation) making the man fertile again. This more commonly occurs in the first few weeks after vasectomy (approximately 1 in 400 chance), so it is extremely important for men to complete the recommended sperm count 12 weeks after the procedure. It is much rarer for the ends to rejoin at a later date (and estimated 1 in 2000 chance).

Do I need to come back to a Dr Blanks clinic to submit my test kit?

No. For your convenience you may complete your sperm test kit at home after 3 months have passed (Dr Blanks will give you the test kit on the day you had your vasectomy procedure). You may then drop it off at a collection site close to your house. Dr Blanks will advise you regarding the closest collection centre to your house. The doctor will have the results sent to him and he will call with the news.

How’s the parking around the clinics, doc?

  • Melbourne Vasectomy Clinic: 17/431 St Kilda Road, Melbourne VIC:
    Ample parking in front of the clinic on St Kilda road and on Slater street.
  • Frankston Vasectomy Clinic: 164 Cranbourne Road, Frankston VIC:
    Ample street and clinic parking.
  • Campbellfield Vasectomy Clinic: 1655 Sydney Road, Campbellfield VIC: Ample street and clinic parking.
  • Bendigo Vasectomy Clinic: 282 High Street, Golden Square VIC:
    Ample street and clinic parking.
  • Adelaide Vasectomy Clinic: 850 Port Road, Woodville SA:
    Parking available behind the clinic. Patients presenting at the clinic do not need to pay the parking meters.

I would like a Vasectomy, where do I start?

Call the Dr Blanks number on 1800 252 657 and speak directly to a doctor. Else you may put an enquiry on our website drblanks.com.au/booking/ and a doctor will call you back shortly after to touch base with you.

What happens after the procedure ends? How long before I recover?

Once the procedure is completed you can leave. The anesthetic will take 2 to 4 hours to wear off and when it does you may feel some pain that was previously masked by the anaesthetic. You are encouraged to use paracetamol and ibuprofen together for any residual pain. You are also encouraged to use an ice pack with slight compression over the scrotum (20mins on, 20mins off) until bedtime. The more ice you can use after the procedure the better you are likely to feel the day after your procedure. If your doctor has used stitches to close the entry site, they are absorbable and do not need to be removed; they will dissolve away over the next few days after your procedure.

Every man is different, some men will be completely pain free the next day, others will take a few more days. Dr Blanks will touch base with you a day or two after your procedure to make sure you are progressing well.

May I have friends or my partner in the procedure room?

Patient’s friends or partners will not be permitted to enter the procedure room. Our surgical rooms require a strict sterile environment.  Procedure rooms are arranged with specific equipment and space requirements that are designed to accommodate the doctor, clinical staff and the patient. While your partner’s or friend’s wish to support you in person on the day is understandable, all our Dr Blanks sites provide designated waiting areas where friends and family can stay during your procedure.

Can I fly after having my vasectomy?

After a vasectomy, it’s best to wait for about a week before considering flying. The initial recovery period is important, and flying might be uncomfortable due to potential swelling and pressure changes. Make sure you’re following your doctor’s advice and considering your own comfort and physical limitations before making any travel plans. It’s a good idea to consult your Doctor before deciding to fly after the procedure.

I need to speak to communicate with to my doctor or the Dr Blanks team after my procedure. Is it best to call or email?

Calling your medical clinic after a consultation is better than emailing, as phone calls offer real-time communication and quick answers, which is crucial for timely questions. Calls also allow for back-and-forth conversation, clarifying information and addressing complex issues effectively. Overall, calls provide faster access to healthcare professionals compared to waiting for email replies. Our phone line is 1800 252 657.

Do I need to fast for my procedure?

Fasting before a vasectomy isn’t necessary for a few reasons. Vasectomy procedures typically use local anaesthesia, numbing only the surgical area. These procedures are relatively quick and involve minimal discomfort. Unlike surgeries with general anesthesia, the risk of stomach contents entering the lungs (aspiration) is low. To prioritise your comfort on the day, we allow eating and drinking before your vasectomy.

Can I get a medical certificate from the clinic on the day?

Yes, your doctor can provide a medical certificate on the day of your vasectomy if needed. Let your doctor know on the day of the day of your procedure. The certificate will confirm your procedure, date, and any required recovery period. Always communicate your requirements to ensure proper documentation.

I’ve passed my post vasectomy semen analysis 3 months after my procedure; can I retest again in the future for my own peace of mind?

Yes, you can retest your semen for peace of mind, even after passing the initial post-vasectomy analysis. This can offer ongoing reassurance and address any new concerns. Discuss your intentions with your healthcare provider for guidance tailored to your situation.

I booked my procedure, but can’t remember which day I booked for. What do I do?

All patient’s receive reminder text messages 1 week prior to their procedure. If you’re still unsure or have not received a text message, please call 1800 252 657.

I have a medical condition that I’m concerned may affect my vasectomy. What do I do?

Medical conditions that might affect vasectomy suitability include bleeding disorders, immunodeficiency, genital infections, hernia, chronic illnesses, and anaesthesia allergies. Previous surgeries, prostate problems, and certain medications such as ‘blood thinners’ also need to be considered. Consult the Dr Blanks clinics on 1800 252 657 for a healthcare provider to assess your specific situation before deciding.

Do I need to wash the wound, or apply anything to the surgical keyhole site after I take the dressing off?

There is no need to apply further antiseptics or creams to the site where keyhole was after removing dressing. A vasectomy has a minimal infection risk and we encourage a natural healing process. Applying antiseptics is not necessary as the keyhole is small and has usually closed by the time you remove dressing. This approach prevents irritation and allows air exposure for better healing. Trust your doctor’s tailored instructions for optimal post-procedure care. If concerns arise, contact your doctor on 1800 252 657.

What does the doctor do? How is a vasectomy done?

Importantly, there are no cuts with the no scalpel technique. After the anaesthetic has taken affect (and the scrotum has been numbed) your doctor will then use a special pointy forceps to make a small puncture (keyhole) on the skin over the tubes in the scrotum. The layers of tissue are then pushed aside to reveal just tube only. The tubes are then snipped, sealed with a hot probe, tied and a layer of tissue is placed in between the two ends. This process is repeated on the other side through the same puncture keyhole site or through a new second keyhole.

What other options do I have to increase my comfort or to relax me on the day?

Some men like having a diazepam tablet before the procedure or an anaesthetic inhaler, whilst listening to music of your choice or reading. These options will be accommodated for should you prefer these additional medications for your comfort.

Should you choose this option make sure you receive a script from your regular GP or call the Dr Blanks clinic prior to your procedure to learn about how you can qualify for a script from us. Usually it will require you coming in prior to your procedure date so the Dr can take a history and examine you before providing a script.

How long does the procedure take

From open to close, the typical procedure takes 15-20mins.

How soon before I can fly, doc?

Again, only general advice can be given when it comes to predicting recovery and going back to your daily normal. If zero is no pain and 10 is the ‘worst pain you can imagine,’ most gentlemen sit at around a 1 or 2 the next day. Panadol and ibuprofen (combined together in a 2 in 1 tablet) is usually enough to help you recover as quickly as possible. Even if you’re pain free the next day, we do not recommend flying the next day. We would advice holding off for 5 to 7 days before getting on the plane. This is just to keep you safe in the unlikely event you have a spike in pain, or any bruising or bleeding.

Does a vasectomy protect against sexually transmissible infections (STIs)?

No. If you believe there may be a risk of contracting an STI from a sexual encounter, you must still wear a condom.

Does Medicare refund any of the procedure cost?

After you settle the fee with the Dr Blanks Team after the procedure, Medicare will refund you $222.65. We will process this claim for you on the day and you will receive it on the spot. Your out of pocket fee for the whole procedure is $594.35.

Can I claim a vasectomy under my private health?

As this is an elective, non-hospital procedure, private insurance companies will not subsidise these procedures in Australia. The great news is that when you do your vasectomy with Dr Blanks with local anaesthetic, we send your rebate to Medicare for you. Medicare will deposit $206.60 into your nominated bank account 1-2 days after your procedure.

When does a vasectomy begin working? When does a vasectomy become effective?

You must test your vasectomy 3 months AND at least 20-30 ejaculations after your procedure as outlined in the Australian Safety and Efficacy Register of New Interventional Procedures-Surgical (ASERNIP-S) guidelines. By then, the majority of men (90%) will pass their test and may begin using their vasectomy. A very small number of men will need to keep testing until receiving the green light from their doctor to begin using their vasectomy. The minimum requirement (3 months and at least 20-30 ejaculations) is to allow time for the sperm residing in the vasa deferentia to flush out from your system. You will receive your sperm test request slip from your doctor at no extra fee. Once you have submitted your sample to a pathology collecting centre, the Dr Blanks doctor will then call you and be able to confirm that you no longer need to use protection if you result shows 0 sperm in your semen analysis.

Why is a pre-consultation important? Are all men suitable for a vasectomy?

Here at Dr Blanks we aim at providing excellent and safe patient care. During the bulk billed pre-consultation you will meet your doctor and he will examine you as well as going into more depth about the ins and outs of your procedure. You may choose to have your consultation on the same day as your procedure or on a different day. All men are different. Some men who have certain anatomical variations such as undiagnosed hernias, varicoceles or hydroceles will be advised of their surgical options as a vasectomy under local may not be the most appropriate or safest option. Your doctor will determine your best option after examining you.

Do I need a referral from my GP?

No, a referral from your general practitioner is not required.

I am taking blood thinners, what should I do, doc?

If you are taking anticoagulants or ‘blood thinning’ medications such as:

  • Co-plavix
  • Warfarin/Coumadin
  • Xarelto
  • Brilinta
  • Eliquis
  • Pradaxa

Or have a bleeding disorder such as:

  • Acquired platelet function defects.
  • Congenital platelet function defects.
  • Disseminated intravascular coagulation(DIC)
  • Prothrombin deficiency.
  • Factor V deficiency.
  • Factor VII deficiency.
  • Factor X deficiency.
  • Factor XI deficiency (hemophiliaC)

Please call our clinics in advance of your booking and ask our medical staff for more information.

I am taking aspirin, can I still continue with my vasectomy?

Yes, you may continue taking your aspirin and safely proceed with your vasectomy.

Should I shower after my vasectomy?

You may shower 24 hours after your vasectomy. Before then try keep your special sterile bandage dry.

What should I wear after my procedure?

Best to wear supported/well fitted underwear (not boxers) for the first few days after your procedure to minimise the chances of any unessary bruising/pain. You essentially do not want your scrotum jiggling around too much after your procedure. So no boxers for a week please.

What about having a bath, spa or going for a swim?

Best to avoid baths, spas or swimming for at least 4 days until the wound heals.

When should I remove the Dr Blanks bandage that is protecting the site where the keyhole was?

You may gently peel your dressing off in the shower at least 24 hours after your vasectomy procedure.

May I have my procedure under general anaesthetic?

If you would still like your procedure under general anesthetic call our rooms on 1800 252 657 and we can organise this for you.

Where can I get a vasectomy with Dr Blanks? Which vasectomy clinic is near me?

You may choose to have the procedure at the Dr Blanks headquarters at 17/431 St Kilda Road Melbourne (close to the Alfred Hospital). We also have a campus at Frankston at 164 Cranbourne Road Frankston, our Campbellfield Clinic at 1655 Sydney Road Melbourne or Bendigo at 395 High Street, Golden Square.

You can choose which site you prefer on our website drblanks.com.au/booking/ or by calling 1800 252 657.

Make your booking today.

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