There are a number of alternatives to vasectomy you could consider:
1. Barrier methods. You could wear a condom, your partner could use a diaphragm, or you could use both together.
2. Spermicides. There are foams and creams that can be placed into the vagina before intercourse to kill sperm before they can fertilize your partner’s eggs. Spermicides can be used alone or in combination with barrier methods.
3. Hormonal methods. Your partner may use birth control pills, shots, patches, or implants to prevent the release of eggs from the ovaries or the implantation of fertilized eggs into the uterus (womb). Emergency Contraception (EC, Plan B, or the “morning-after” pill) will prevent pregnancy if taken within 72 hours of intercourse during which no contraception was used, or during which a condom slipped off or broke.
4. Intrauterine device (IUD). Your partner may have a small device placed into her uterus to decrease the likelihood of fertilization (sperm and egg coming together) and to prevent implantation of fertilized eggs into the uterus.
All of these alternatives are less effective than vasectomy, but they are reversible. You should be familiar with them before proceeding with vasectomy. Please ask us if you would like more information and make sure you have taken time to evaluate information about alternatives.
There is no form of fertility control except abstinence that is free of potential complications.
Vasectomy candidates must weigh the risks of vasectomy against the risks (for their partners) of alternative means of contraception as well as the risks associated with unplanned pregnancy.
Vasectomy provides a means of permanent birth control with a minimum likelihood of complications and maximum chances of effectiveness and safety.