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Last Updated: Sunday, 11 September 2005, 23:06 GMT 00:06 UK
Vasectomy film to 'dispel myths'
A vasectomy cuts the tubes carrying sperm to the penis
Men thinking about having a vasectomy are being given the opportunity to watch an operation to help allay any fears they might have.

The charity Marie Stopes International has put a close-up and real-time video of an operation on the internet.

The site is launched to mark the first National Vasectomy Awareness Week.

It is thought many men fear a vasectomy will hurt and could damage their sex life, but the charity said the op was relatively pain-free, simple and quick.

Vasectomy is one of the most reliable [contraception] methods available, with a 99.5% effectiveness rating.
Alison Peters
Marie Stopes International

Alison Peters, Marie Stopes International sterilisation services manager, said: "So many men still believe that a vasectomy is a protracted and painful procedure.

"The reality for most men is that it is a relatively pain-free, simple and quick procedure that, as our new film demonstrates, takes just a few short minutes to perform."

A recent survey of more than 1,000 men conducted for Marie Stopes International found 25% wrongly believed that vasectomies are "really painful and cause bad swelling" and more than one in ten equated vasectomy with castration.

And 39% said that they would not undergo a vasectomy "in any circumstances".

'Ideal solution'

Marie Stopes International is keen to confront these misconceptions - and increase the number of couples opting for this form of contraception.

Ms Peters said: "Protracted use of some temporary hormonal methods of contraception, such as the Pill, can be a health concern for women over 35, especially if they are overweight and smoke.

"Letting the man take responsibility for contraception by having a vasectomy, is an ideal solution for both partners.

"Vasectomy is one of the most reliable methods available, with a 99.5% effectiveness rating.

"For couples who have completed their families and are looking to have a stress free sexual relationship without the worry of unplanned pregnancy always casting a shadow, it's the perfect choice."


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