For many people, becoming a parent is the most beautiful thing in the world. But it requires careful planning and it’s important to find the right moment to start a family.
Medical science has developed many forms of contraception, with vasectomy being among the most effective options. If you believe you’re done having children, or you don’t want children at all, you might want to consider it.
But how much does a vasectomy cost, and is it there a way to reverse it if you change your mind? Is it really the best way of preventing an unwanted pregnancy? Keep reading to find out.
How Much Does a Vasectomy Cost?
In the US, male sterilization can cost anywhere between $300 and $3,000. The main factor that contributes to the price is where the vasectomy takes place. For example, performing a vasectomy in a doctor’s office or a clinic costs less than doing it in an outpatient facility. There are also regional differences in pricing.
There are two types of vasectomy you can choose from: conventional and non-scalpel vasectomy. The second option is the more convenient one, as no stitches are needed, and the recovery time is much shorter. If you’re considering a non-scalpel vasectomy, you’ll be glad to hear that it costs the same as the conventional method in most cases. Still, some private clinics might charge more for it.
What Does the Price Cover?
In most cases, your vasectomy bill should cover:
- The first consultation with the doctor
- The procedure
- Follow-up semen analyses
After the procedure, you’ll have to do a few follow-up sperm counts to see whether it was successful. Most clinics include this in the price, but some may charge extra for it. It’s important that you ask your healthcare provider about everything that your fee covers, so that you can avoid hidden expenses.
Some outpatient facilities and clinics might offer you a discount if you decide to pay cash in advance. You can also use your credit card to pay for the procedure in most facilities. Note that many insurance plans cover the partial or full cost of a vasectomy.
Additional Costs Due to Possible Side Effects
In general, a vasectomy is a safe procedure that comes with little to no serious side effects. But some men might experience complications, which include:
- Infection – Swelling that doesn’t go away followed by a high fever and increased pain.
- Granulomas – These are non-cancerous growths that may form on the operation site due to sperm leakage.
- Erectile dysfunction or a lack of sex drive – The procedure might also cause painful intercourse or premature ejaculation.
- Severe pain – Some pain is normal, but if it doesn’t subside within a week (or less with the non-scalpel procedure), or gets worse with time, it might be a sign of a more serious problem.
Treating these side effects can be an additional expense, and it’s important to plan your budget accordingly. You might even need further surgery, which can be quite costly.
Still, side effects develop rarely, and most patients have a relatively fast and smooth recovery. It’s also important to mention that in the vast majority of cases, vasectomy doesn’t cause impotence.
Reverse Vasectomy Cost
Around 6% of people that have a vasectomy end up regretting this decision for different reasons. This is when they start thinking about vasectomy reversal. Unfortunately, this is an extremely expensive way of changing your mind.
The price of a reverse vasectomy can go from a few thousand dollars to a staggering $30,000 or more. Worse yet, medical insurance usually doesn’t cover these costs. Still, it’s worth checking in with the insurance carrier just in case they offer partial coverage.
There are various payment arrangements that can be made, but most doctors require a non-refundable fee as a form of commitment. It’s important that you do some research before you decide to have a reverse vasectomy, as there may be good local options that can save you a great deal of money.
Sperm Banking Cost
The chances of a reverse vasectomy failing aren’t that small, as sperm fails to return to the semen in only 10-20% of cases, depending on the procedure. What’s more, the partners of men who have had a vasectomy manage to conceive in 40-70% of cases.
But this success rate isn’t enough for everybody. There’s no guarantee that the procedure will make you fertile again, so you may end up losing money, not to mention the disappointment of knowing that the surgery wasn’t successful. Chances of a successful reversal drop as more time passes after the vasectomy.
As a backup option, men who want to have a reverse vasectomy will often go with sperm banking. During the reverse vasectomy procedure, sperm is harvested and is sent to a sperm bank for later use in in-vitro fertilization.
Even though this is a good way to make sure a patient can still have children if the surgery is unsuccessful, it comes at a price. Both sperm harvesting and banking involve fees that can go from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.
To maximize your chances of success, always add sperm harvesting and banking costs to the overall costs of a reverse vasectomy.
Is Having a Vasectomy Worth It?
Most men who have a vasectomy are satisfied with the results. It’s an effective way of enjoying sex without the risk of unwanted pregnancy, and the procedure is quick and relatively safe.
Still, this isn’t a small decision, and it should be well thought out. A reverse vasectomy costs a lot of money, and it can also be ineffective.
If you ever consider having a vasectomy, make sure to discuss this decision with your partner. Take into account the costs, the risks, and the end result of the procedure before you make your decision. If it seems like too big of a step, there are many other contraceptive methods that can be effective, while saving you a lot of money at the same time.