Vasectomy or Tubal Ligation? How to Choose the Right Permanent Birth Control Option is Right for Your Family

There are a number of effective contraception options for preventing pregnancy, including birth control pills, IUDs, condoms, and more. For couples who are finished building their family or who have decided to not have children, it can make sense to consider a more permanent, reliable birth control option. These choices include tubal ligation for women (also called “getting your tubes tied”) and vasectomy for men. If you’ve decided that permanent birth control is right for you, don’t put off seeking surgery— especially if becoming pregnant would pose a health risk.

Tubal Ligation
Tubal ligation (commonly called “getting your tubes tied”) is a procedure that removes a woman’s fallopian tubes, which deliver the ova (eggs) to the uterus. After a tubal ligation, the ovaries still produce eggs, and the patient still has her period each month, but the eggs are prevented from reaching the uterus for fertilization. This permanent, non-reversible form of sterilization is performed under general or spinal anesthesia, with patients typically going home the same day.

Tubal ligation surgery is nearly 100% effective at preventing pregnancy. It’s also convenient and non-pharmaceutical: there’s no need to remember, buy, or use any kind of contraception, including birth control pills, or worry about side effects. Research has shown salpingectomy may lower your risk of ovarian cancer.

It’s important to consider that tubal ligation is a surgical procedure that requires anesthesia and may cause some soreness for several days, with heavy lifting discouraged for 2-3 weeks afterward. It’s generally an irreversible and permanent form of sterilization (although a woman could still try in vitro fertilization, or IVF, to become pregnant). 

Vasectomy is a minor surgery that blocks the ducts that carry a man’s sperm from the testicles to the urethra. Aside from abstinence, vasectomy is the most effective way to prevent pregnancy. This typically painless procedure is done at the doctor’s office using local anesthesia and is a relatively inexpensive procedure. Vasectomy does not affect a man’s sexual performance. For these reasons, many couples decide that vasectomy is an excellent choice of permanent birth control methods. 

MSA Offers Options
The experienced, skilled surgeons at Muskegon Surgical Associates can provide you with the expertise and guidance to decide if a permanent birth control option is right for you. Contact us to schedule a consultation.

MSA Family Planning