Lifewatch: Vasectomies

Reported by Claire Hosmann - email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

(WECT) - Surviving the squeeze has a lot of couples discussing family planning and one option that may be gaining popularity is vasectomies.

Johnny Delgado and his wife Mary love their kids, but Johnny said with two boys from a previous marriage and 2 young girls from this one, it's all his paycheck as a city bus driver can stand.

"The way the economy is - it's just tough the way society is coming up these days," said Johnny.

Mike Binnix said it's the same for him and his wife, Valerie.  In their case one son and two daughters is their limit.

"Too expensive," said Mike.  "You know it's hard enough having three if you ask me."

Both men specifically mention the tough economy when it comes to family planning, a theme doctors like urologist Ross Cohen are hearing more often when men walk through the door to discuss having a vasectomy.

"Definitely within the last two or three years that's been more significant," said Dr. Cohen.  "But even this year I'd say an even more significant number have come in for consultations."

Dr. Cohen said at this point it's just an observation, but he's willing to be more and more men are choosing vasectomies as a form of birth control.

"They really can't afford to have any more children than they already have, just because of the expense of raising a child," said Dr. Cohen.

According to Dr. Cohen, a vasectomy is covered my insurance in most cases, making it a less expensive option than the pill and other forms of contraception.

It is also far less invasive a procedure than the female form of sterilization known as tubal ligation.

For Johnny and Mike, it's not yet an alternative they would choose, but they can see why perhaps a growing number of men in their age group might.

You may have heard or read that vasectomies can be reversed, but Dr. Cohen warns that can be very expensive and is not likely to be covered by insurance.  Also, there is no guarantee that it will work.