Vasectomy is available on the NHS through Sentinel Healthcare – please see your GP to be referred. We are committed to delivering great health care and seek to deliver a truly excellent service for you.

what is a vasectomy?

A vasectomy is a procedure designed to render a man permanently sterile and unable to father any more children. This is achieved by cutting the sperm tubes (vas) and sealing the ends.

Sperm actually provide very little volume to your ejaculate so you continue to ejaculate as normal after the procedure and sex should be unchanged.

What is a vasectomy

Recovering from a vasectomy

Vasectomy is not immediately effective and as such you will need to use additional contraception for at least the first 4 months and up until you have sent off a postal sperm sample and we have written to you to tell you it is free of sperm.

Over 95% of men are declared sterile (ie the vasectomy has worked) after that first sample but about 5% of patients need to do further tests.

Most patients clear any lingering sperm in time but there is about a 1 in 150 chance that the body re-joins the sperm tubes early in the healing process and in these cases the procedure does not work. Should this happen we can offer you a further operation.

At a glance: facts about vasectomy

  • In most cases, vasectomy is more than 99% effective. Out of 2,000 men who are sterilised, one will get a woman pregnant during the rest of his lifetime.
  • Male sterilisation is considered permanent – once it’s done, you don’t have to think about contraception again.
  • Up to two semen tests are done after the operation, to ensure that all the sperm have gone.
  • You need to use contraception for at least 16 weeks after the operation, and until we have confirmed in writing that you have a clear test result.
  • Your scrotum may become bruised, swollen or painful – some men have ongoing pain in their testicles.
  • As with any surgery, there’s a slight risk of infection.
  • Reversing the operation isn’t easy, and is not available on the NHS.
  • Vasectomy doesn’t protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). By using a condom, you’ll protect yourself and your partner against STIs.

Find out more about vasectomies at

Is Vasectomy right for you?

Photo by Candice Picard on Unsplash

Vasectomy should be considered a permanent procedure and you should only go forward with the operation if you are absolutely sure you want no more children.

You will be aware of vasectomy reversal procedures but these are not available on the NHS, cost many thousands of pounds, and do not always work.

Your appointment steps


    We will send you an appointment letter with an information pack and your consent form


    You must read the full information pack ahead of your appointment. Please let us know if you are on any of the medications listed in the pack or have any other health issues ahead of your appointment, as this could prevent your procedure going ahead on the day.


    Vasectomy appointments take around half an hour, and this includes some time for you to discuss any questions you may have. The actual procedure takes around 15 minutes and is performed under local anaesthetic.


    You may feel sore for a few days after your procedure, and should not undertake any heavy lifting for around ten days. Depending on your profession, you may need to book some time off.


    You will be given a sample kit at your appointment. Your first sample should be sent off 16 weeks after your procedure. In the meantime you must continue to take other contraceptive measures.

Useful Resources

Vasectomy Post-op advice sheet


Pre-op  pack and consent form


GP Referral Form

Download form here


  • Excellent professional service, thank you

    Vasectomy Patient
  • I was very pleased with the whole process and how professional everyone was and how easy it was for the sample and results. Very pleased. Thank you

    Vasectomy Patient
  • Glad to have had the procedure very professional service.

    Vasectomy Patient
  • Very professional service not just through the doctor but with the nurse also. Procedure 99% painless - thank you

    Vasectomy Patient
  • Excellent service. Brilliant surgeon and team. 10 out of 10

    Vasectomy Patient
  • Very please with the job done from the NHS and Doctor was friendly and reassuring. In and out before you know it.

    Vasectomy Patient
  • Very happy with entire procedure. I was worried about it before, but shouldn’t have been.

    Vasectomy Patient
  • [The doctor]  was fantastic and made the whole process very smooth and stress free.

    Vasectomy Patient

Salcombe -Photo by Rory Collins on Unsplash

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