Hesperian Health Guides

Sterilization

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HealthWiki > A Health Handbook for Women with Disabilities > Chapter 9: Family planning > Sterilization


There are operations that make it almost impossible for a woman or a man to have children. Since these operations are permanent, they are good only for women and men who are certain they do not want any more children. A trained health worker or doctor can perform the operations in a health center or hospital.

The operation for women is more serious than the operation for men. The man will recover faster from the side effects of the operation. So, if possible, it is safer for a man to have the operation than a woman.

a woman's reproductive parts, showing where the tubes are cut.

The woman's
tubes are cut
here
and
here

The operation for a woman (tubal ligation)

The health worker cuts or ties the tubes that carry the egg to the womb. The operation takes about 30 minutes. It does not change a woman's monthly bleeding. The operation will not affect her sexuality, and she will be able to have a normal sex life and to have sexual pleasure.

There is a small risk you can still get pregnant after the operation, so if you have signs of pregnancy, see a health worker. If your pregnancy is in the tubes, it is very dangerous.

The operation for a man (vasectomy)

a man's reproductive parts, showing where the tubes are cut.
The man's
tubes are cut
here
and
here

The tubes that carry the man’s sperm from his testicles to his penis are cut. The operation takes only a few minutes to do, and it does not change the man’s ability to have sex or to feel sexual pleasure. He still ejaculates (comes), but the semen does not have any sperm in it. For about 3 months, there are still sperm in the tubes, so the couple must use another method of family planning.