08 Nov Tubal Ligation vs Vasectomy for Permanent Birth Control
The debate on tubal ligation vs vasectomy is not a new one. Both methods are targeted at providing permanent birth control solutions for women. But which one should you opt for? To find out which one suits you better here is what the two treatments have to offer.
This method involves getting a woman’s fallopian tubes tied. The procedure aims at preventing eggs from traveling to the ovaries and then the uterus. Blocking this passage via the fallopian tubes stops the woman from getting pregnant.
The procedure for tubal ligation is a fairly uncomplicated one and is often performed as an outpatient surgery. It involves anesthetizing the patient and making one or two small incisions in the belly.
A thin device is then inserted into one of the incisions which cuts, seals, bands, clamps or ties the fallopian tubes.
Once the tubes are cut, the surgeon stitches up the patient and they are free to go home a few hours later.
There is also a non-surgical version of tubal ligation available. This uses devices placed in the fallopian tubes to seal them. Devices get inserted through the vagina and uterus and do not require an incision.
Vasectomy is another surgical procedure to prevent pregnancy from occurring in the future. This is a male sterilization procedure which involves cutting the vas deferens.
Vas deferens is the tube that transports sperm in men. Once cut, the sperm has no way of navigating their course and cannot mix with semen. This prevents the man from getting a woman pregnant.
What are the chances of pregnancy after tubal ligation?
While it is a very effective method of birth control, some women may still become pregnant after undergoing tubal ligation.
However, if a pregnancy were to occur, the risk of experiencing an ectopic pregnancy increases greatly.
Both procedures of tubal ligation and vasectomy can be reversed. Having said that vasectomy reversal has a greater success rate at conception since the age of the man is not important. The only consideration here is the time elapsed.
If a vasectomy is reversed within the first three years, then its success rate is a whopping 97%. A vasectomy reversed after 15 years of the initial procedure may still see success rates of 69%.
Tubal ligation reversal is a bit more complicated as its success rate greatly depends on the woman’s age, the type of procedure done and if ovulation is still happening.
Typically a younger age is associated with a higher success rate. In cases where only tubal clips are inserted to block the fallopian tubes, the rate of success after reversal is the greatest.
Another consideration is the cost of each reversal procedure. For instance, the cost of vasectomy is far less than that of tubal ligation. Tubal ligation incurs greater costs as there is more anesthesia involved along with the use of an operating room.
In terms of complications regarding the two procedures, surgical tubal ligation presents more complications than vasectomy. Women have a longer recovery period than men and may present symptoms of nausea, vomiting and some bruising after the procedure.
The same, when applied to vasectomy candidates, is far less because the procedure involves a smaller skin opening with some possibility of infection for some patients.