BPN is now a 501(c)(3) non-profit and we are building a new website!
Read more, and see how you can help:
Tubal Ligation vs. Vasectomy
Berkeley Parents Network >
Parenting, Families, & the Community >
Tubal Ligation vs. Vasectomy
I am scheduled to have my 2nd c-section next month with my 3rd
child. (had twins 1st time around) My husband and I are sure
we don't want anymore kids but can't decide if I should get my
tubes tied during the c-section, or if he should get a
My concerns are that I have heard that some women have hormonal
and other issues (palops, more painful menstual cycles, etc)
after having their tubes tied. With my experiences thus far
and history, I think if there are issues to be had because of
tying tubes, it would happen to me. I just don't really want to
take the chance. On the other hand, it seems silly to have my
husband go in for a procedure if he doesn't have to.
So, my question is...has anyone had any issues after tying your
tubes during a c-section, has anyone had issues after a
vasectomy, and any other advice you may want to share.
I can't speak to the tube tying thing. But have you thought
about getting an IUD? Very effective, reversible, lasts 10
years. My doctor believes they are safe. I've had one for the
last 4 years (and had another one for many years when I was
younger) and really like it. I have the non-hormone-releasing
No more kids for me
I have had multiple c-sections and after the last one, my husband got a vasectomy.
The procedure for him was an out-patient, very simple, practically painless
operation. I too thought that I should have a tubal ligation since I was ''there
anyway''. But after I did some research on the web, I decided that the risk of
complication was too great. A vasectomy had much less risk. My husband wanted
to have the procedure because he said that throughout our relationship the burden
of contraception had been on me and he wanted to take the responsibly himself.
After the procedure, he said that he felt so free - that he had worried his whole
sexual life about getting someone pregnant unintentionally and now he didn't have
to worry and could just completely enjoy sex. If your husband is willing, let him
this for you. After all you've given him two beautiful children.
When the time came for us to choose who would be cut, my wife
felt that she had been the one responsible for ''contraception''
all her life and so it was my turn. It was no real issue for me,
so I had the procedure done, it was quick, and realatively
painless. I'm glad that I had it done. If you have any fears, or
worries for your own health, then I would certainly put the task
on your husband.
Happy to be cut
I got an IUD- Mirena- and it lasts 5 years, then it is removed
and you can decide what you want to do from there. What sold me
is the fact that I have had no side effects as stated by my OB,
or none I am aware of. And just in case we do want to have
another child, which I know is not your dilemma, we have not
made a huge mistake on the body. I dont know your age but if
you have the IUD it might just naturally take your through to
menopause and not need anything permanent done
I just had my tubes tied after my second c-section. Since I was
already open down there my husband and I decided it was easy to
do since we knew we were done having kids. I haven't seen any
adverse side effects yet and am so happy not to ever have to
use birth control again. I know others who have had their tubes
tied and said all was well after.
Maybe neither of you has to have a surgical procedure: I used
an IUD --best thing I ever did. Despite a bad rap, they're
actually quite safe, extremely effective, and hormone-free.
They work for 10-years and are then easily replaced. Besides
the fact that IUDs are totally and immediately reversible; Iíd
be willing to bet that their drawbacks/side-effects are also
better than those of either tying tubes or having a vasectomy.
As several people recommended, try an IUD before either of you gets snipped. I had
a copper-T (no hormones) for several years and it was very low-hassle birth control.
The only downside was that it made my periods much heavier and longer, so I
eventually decided not to stay with it. I understand the the Mirena IUD will actually
make periods lighter, but I'm leery of anything hormonal 'cause I'm at high risk for
stroke. (Someone will leap in here and point out that the progesterone in the Mirena
does not contribute to stroke risk.... The rational part of my brain will readily
acknowledge that's true, but the non-rational part of my brain still isn't comfortable
with the idea.)
As for vasectomy vs. tubal ligation... My partner and I have 4 kids between us, and
there's just no way we'd want more. We looked into both options, and vasectomy
seemed much less invasive. The day of the surgery he was moving pretty slowly and
carefully, but was almost back to normal the next day, and overall was very
pleasantly surprised by how quickly and smoothly the recovery went. This was all
pretty recent, so I can't give you the long-term perspective, but the short-term
perspective is that it was simple and straightforward.
Hope this helps.
Grateful to my partner
we did neither. i highly recommend what we did.
i has essure inserts put in (the same material
used in stents). these block the fallopian tubes. no incisions.
it is done vaginally and they just slide them into your
uterus and into the tubes. i suspect a similar procedure
is used to slide in an iud.
to verify the tubes are blocked (3 months
later), as they grow around the inserts and seal, you need
an hsg. for the insertion you need local
anesthesia (just like most things going into the uterus via the
cervix i think). i was sort of wiped out that day, but able to
lift up my 5 year old and carry him up a flight of stairs when
he hurt himself that evening. you should look into it! it is
permanent, on the other hand both people still have their
egg/sperm if for some reason you did want another child. i
wish i'd done it sooner. there's info at www.essure.com .
it's new. i had it done at alta bates in berkeley with
dr. huibonhua, i recommend her highly. but the essure site
also has a list of physicians who do it.
Am considering vasectomy or tubal ligation after our last child
is born this summer. Interested in first-hand accounts of
post-operative experiences of both. What were your immediate side
effects from surgery, recovery time, short- and long-term
physical and mental ramifications? Recommend one over the other?
Tubal ligation is a more invasive procedure than a vasectomy. I
would not have volunteered to have one unless there was a good
reason for my husband not to have a vasectomy.
My husbandís recovery from his procedure was relatively easy.
There was pain the first day, discomfort for about a week
afterwards, and no problems since.
He Stepped Up
I think I can present both sides because my husband had a
vasectomy AND I had a tubal ligation beacuse my husband's
My husband seemed a good candidate for routine vasectomy, but
once in, the urologist discovered an atypical cluster of veins
(variscosity, maybe? I can't remember the term) that were in
the way. He told my husband that his recovery would be longer
because he really had to work his way around them. My husband
had a local and was awake during the surgery, and says he
didn't feel much.
His recovery in terms of the incision healing took about 1 week
which was longer than average. The first day he pretty much sat
around alternating bags of frozen peas and whining. After the
first week he was healed and going to work and working out
again, but not without saying, ''Ow, my b---s!'' CONSTANTLY for
about a month.
Several follow up tests later, he was still positive for live
swimmers. The urologist recommended he go in again. I knew that
I couldn't live with another month of the complaining and the
uncertainty about getting pregnant accidentally. So I scheduled
my own appointment and went under the knife. (My husband
disagreed with this decision, but then again in hindsight, he
didn't think he complained all that much.)
My surgery was laprascopic. I went in early in the morning and
got prepped, which involved IV insertion, heart & blood
pressure montiors, compression stockings, etc. I was rolled in
around 11 AM, knocked out by an anaesthesiologist, and woke up
not long after in the recovery room. I was sick as a dog from
the anaesthesia and vomited a lot. My husband drove me home
around 2PM and I slept for the rest of the day.
My recovery took a full week, during which I was little able to
take care of my children, much less return to work. My
shoulders and neck felt like they were thrown out - that was
from the dissapation of the gas they use for laprascopy - and
my incisions, though tiny, made me feel like I couldn't really
use my abdominal muscles. Laughing, lifting, bending, etc. My
OBGYN had warned me that I should plan on a week at least and I
didn't believe her because I'm so tough, but I was wrong.
We agree that my procedure was much more major. Again, he
doesn't recall the complaining. In fact, I just told him what I
was writing and he said, ''Go for it, dude!''
Both of us agree, worry-free sex is AWESOME. Best of luck to
you in your decision.
Surgical sterilization procedures involve the surgical division
of tubes of the reproductive system. In women, those tubes are
the fallopian tubes and are inside the abdomen. In men, the vas
deferens are in the scrotum. For women, the surgery must be done
in an operating room, under general anesthesia, (in most cases),
uses two or three 2 cm incisions and involves recovering from an
intrabdominal surgery. In men, the procedure can be done in the
office, under local anesthesia with 2 incisions of 6mm each. The
procedure, while in a delicate area is not intraabdominal and so
has a lesser overall risk and a quicker recovery.
If you are planning a delivery through c-section, doing a tubal
ligation at the same time adds little risk and no extra recovery
time. However, if you are looking at this procedure unrelated to
a delivery, it is a significant surgery for a woman.
When we became pregnant with our fourth child, my husband
volunteered for a vasectomy. He had it done on Friday, iced all
weekend while lying in bed, returned to work all day standing and
sitting on only tylenol. He was sore for 2 weeks slightly
swollen for one and has no residual pain or any other bad effects.
My bias is not based on my being a woman, although it seemed like
the least he could do considering I had just pushed out the
fourth baby who looked just like him, but as a physician, the
procedure is much easier to do, has a quicker recovery and less
complications in a man than in a woman, so all other things being
equal, vasectomy is a valid choice.
Good luck with your decision
Our family is complete, birth control is a hassle, and we are
trying to decide which procedure is best for us, tubal ligation
(electrocautery) or vasectomy. I've read about both procedures
on WebMD.com but would be interested in hearing from those who
have had one of these procedures done. In particular, what
would you have liked to know beforehand - the nature of it,
any short or long term sexual impacts going under the knife about
the actual procedure, recovery, and any other relevant
Vasectomy ROCKS! The operation takes about 45 minutes,
and is basically painless. Depending on the specifics of a
man's anatomy, there may be some swelling, discoloration,
or NONE AT ALL.
The procedure is FAR less invasive than Tubal Ligation.
Your sex life will improve, either way.
-- ''Sport Model''
The easiest time to have a tubal ligation is right after
delivery when the pertinent organs are close to the surface. I
have a general for the surgery but I think it can be done under
local anesthesia. I hardly notice the scar (very small
horizontal). My husband totally would not go for the vasectomy.
I think it is a guy thing, plus he said he wanted to still have
more kids in case he ever remarried (a very comforting thing to
say when you are just delivering your second child...). I have
had friends who had vasectomies. Obviously less invasive for the
males and they walked around sore for a few days. In sum: I was
very glad to have the procedure done and recovery was rapid.
Good luck on whichever decision you come to.
I know that you asked for advice from people who have had
either procedure before, but I thought I'd add my two cents. I
did a research paper for a women's history class that dealt
with the various methods of birth control we have access to
today. From the information I found, I would not recommend
a tubal ligation over a vasectomy. There are many reasons,
but primarily this: there are hardly any complications
associated with vasectomy, and those that do arise are
easily treated (except failure of course...). Vasectomy is also
less expensive. Tubal ligation, on the other hand, has many
complications associated with the procedure. First, it is
major surgery (which has it's own set of risks with
anesthesia, etc). Second, if it ''fails'' there is a risk of ectopic
pregnancy which is very dangerous. Third, there seems to
be a higher risk of hysterectomy post ligation. I don't know
what the connection is (or if there really is one), but that was
how the statistics were reported. Overall, vasectomy is a
MUCH less invasive procedure and the risks are
significantly less than tubal ligation. I highly recommend
that you look at more than WebMed - search through NIH
articles (you can find their site online). If you want to know
where I found some of my information, I still have my
citations and some of the aticles printed.
Good luck with your decision
and I hope that I have not offended anyone else out there
who opted for ligation. I know that there are many more
factors involved than the simplified view I presented here.
re; tubal ligation v. vascectomy. We were certain that one
kid was enough for us. So i vlounteered to have a
vascectomy. Yes it's true vascectomy is quick and
relatively painless as long as you take the codeine for a few
days .In my case there was some swelling and bruising.
however..... after four years of ''freedom'' from birth control,
i suddenly began to experience testicular swelling and
quite severe pain. Worried i went to the doc who had me
tested for cancer and tumors ...nothing.
eventually the pain and swelling disipated but
then last December my wife woke one morning feeling
nauseous. She'd also forgetten when she'd last had her
period... but we weren't worried becasue i 'd had a
to cut a long story short, let me just say that we are now the
surprised but nontheless proud parents of our second
daughter born Sept 10th this year.
Just to make sure my wife wasn't about to run off with the
mailman i had myself checked out and was astonished to
discover that i was all hooked up again and ready for
Depending on who you talk to the risk factor of a vascectomy
reversing naturally can vary from 1/10,000 to 1/100.
I have a doctor friend who also had a patient whose tubal
ligation reversed itself.
she explained it to me like this... The body gets cut.. the
body tries to heal.
in my case it worked too well.......
My wife had a tubal done at the birth of our new baby and
I'm going to get another vascectomy.... we're not taking any
this page was last updated: Apr 22, 2009
The opinions and statements expressed on this website
are those of parents who subscribe to the
Berkeley Parents Network.
Disclaimer & Usage for
information about using content on this website.
Copyright © 1996-2014 Berkeley Parents Network