The most common forms of female sterilization are the surgical and non-surgical techniques. Both methods completely stop the chance of a sperm meeting an egg in the womb, but the way they do it is slightly different. One way is by tying and cutting the tubes and this is called tubal ligation. The fallopian tubes can also be sealed using an instrument with an electrical current or closed with clips, clamps, or rings so that the sperm cannot meet the egg. A medical device is put inside the fallopian tube through the vagina with a special catheter. Sometimes, even a small piece of the tube is removed.
Whereas non-surgical sterilization blocks the tubes up so nothing is getting in or out. A small flexible, metal insert is put into the fallopian tubes through the vagina with a special catheter. The device works by causing scar tissue to form around the coil. This blocks the fallopian tubes and stops you from getting pregnant. You need to use another contraception method during the first 3 months but once done it is permanent.
Sterilization is performed in a hospital mainly under general anesthesia. Surgical sterilization needs a considerably longer recovery time because of the invasive way the procedure is carried out. The operation only affects a woman’s fertility potential and has no effect on her libido or the ability to have sexual intercourse. It is important you talk first with your healthcare provider to receive counseling on the benefits and risks. It is also important that you know about the alternative long acting reversible methods of contraception such as the IUS, IUD, or implant which all have similar low failure rates.
Male sterilization is often referred to as a vasectomy, and is a surgical procedure in which the sperm-carrying ducts are cut and the operation can be carried out under local anesthetic. After the procedure, a man can still ejaculate, but there is no sperm present. It affects a man’s fertility potential but has no effect on his libido or the ability to have sexual intercourse. It is important you talk first with your healthcare provider to receive counseling on the benefits and risks.
Sometimes it is possible to reverse the operation, but there are no guarantees. Reversal involves complicated surgery that might not work.