A vasectomy is a simple medical procedure that may be performed in a physician’s clinic in as quick as 15 minutes to half an hour. It only requires local anesthetic and usually has zero complications. However, when scrotal examination is hard to perform, or if the patient is dealing with anxiety, the doctor may decide to use sedation. The procedure should only be conducted by a board-certified urologist, who is also known as a urologic surgeon.
When looking for a qualified surgeon for your vasectomy, here are essential considerations to make:
If you have insurance coverage, ask your insurer for a list of surgeons who are part of their network. Most companies do cover vasectomies, so it should be easy to do this.
Your Family Physician
Primary care or family doctors regularly refer patients to specialists and should have no problem giving you a list of qualified surgeons in your area.
It’s not necessary to have your vasectomy in a hospital, but because urologists often split their schedules between clinics and hospitals, hospital administrators can also provide a list of those surgeons they work with.
People Around You
Sometimes, all you need to do is ask a male friend or relative who performed their vasectomy or vasectomy reversal, and you get a referral. This will even give you the chance to go in-depth with your questions and thus gain a better understanding of the procedure.
After making your list of prospective surgeons, learn more about each of them. Consult medical directories, like the American Board of Medical Specialties, to know if the doctor is board-certified and allowed to practice in your state.
To know the surgeon’s level of experience, you can contact state or local medical societies. These organizations can provide general information about surgeons in your state, including how long they have been practicing and how many vasectomies or vasectomy reversals they have performed. And don’t forget to check the surgeon’s hospital appointments. These are often offered to those who are highly qualified in their field of specialty.
Credentials and experience are always a crucial concern, but there practical issues that must be considered too. For example, is the location of the clinic or hospital convenient enough for you? What about the doctor’s office hours?
Note as well that effective communication is at the heart of optimal healthcare, so make it a point that the doctor you choose is easy to communicate with.
Finally, the intangibles. How does the doctor or his or her staff treat you on the phone?Is the office clean and organized? What is the overall vibe that you get when you’re in it? While seemingly small, these things are nonetheless important in choosing a urologist.