August 22, 2017


Sterilization for women is a procedure that closes or blocks your fallopian tubes—where the egg and sperm meet during conception. A safer and more effective option is a vasectomy for men. This procedure blocks the tubes that carry sperm. There are two types of sterilization: incision and non-incision. For women, laparoscopy, mini-laparotomy, and laparotomy are procedures that require a small surgical incision. For men, a vasectomy may require one or two incisions to the scrotum to block the tubes so sperm are kept out of his seminal fluid. Women also have the option of a non-incision procedure called Essure. Micro-inserts are placed in the fallopian tubes through the vagina, causing scar tissue to grow that blocks the tubes. The non-incision vasectomy for men involves a tiny puncture that reaches the tubes where they are tied off, cauterized, or blocked.


  • 99% effective!
  • Requires total certainty before you go through with it.
  • You can’t count on being able to undo the procedure if you change your mind.

How to Use It

Incision methods for women include laparoscopy, mini-laparotomy, and laparotomy. Laparotomy requires a hospital stay for a couple of days and a recovery time of weeks, but it’s effective immediately. Laparoscopy and mini-laparotomy don’t necessarily require an overnight hospital stay and have a faster recovery time. Essure, the non-incision method, involves a skinny, tube-like instrument passing through the opening of the cervix and uterus so a small insert can be placed in each fallopian tube. It contains a 1.5-inch metal coil that scar tissue forms around.

Non-incision methods are simpler and less expensive. You can go home the same day. General anesthesia or surgery aren’t required, so you recover more quickly. A back-up method of birth control is needed for a few months, as well as a follow-up x-ray to make sure it’s effective.

Side Effects

Pros Cons
  • Have all the sex you want without ever worrying about pregnancy
  • Do it once, and never have to think about it again
  • No hormones introduced into your body


  • A very rare risk that your tubes may reconnect themselves—which could lead to a pregnancy
  • Possible complications with surgery, like bleeding, infection or a reaction to anesthesia
  • For the Essure method, the coils may move out of place.
  • Also with Essure, the uterus could be damaged during insertion (this is rare)