What Age Do You Have to Be to Get a Vasectomy?

A vasectomy, a form of permanent birth control, is a medical procedure that is performed on men that prevents the sperm from entering the fluid (semen) that a male ejaculates. Your body will still continue to produce sperm following a vasectomy, however, rather than traveling into the semen, it will be absorbed by your body. Sperm is necessary to fertilize a female’s egg. Therefore, if the semen does not contain sperm, an egg cannot be fertilized, and thus, a woman cannot become pregnant. You might be wondering if there is a certain age requirement in order to get a vasectomy. Let's explore.

What Age Do You Have to Be to Get a Vasectomy?

Reasons to Get a Vasectomy

The majority of men who seek a vasectomy do so in order to avoid unplanned pregnancies. While there are other forms of birth control available that are less invasive, such as condoms and birth control pills, many men and women would rather not use these forms of birth control.

For these individuals, a vasectomy can be a more appealing option. A vasectomy is a quick and relatively painless procedure, the success rate is high, and no pills, condoms, or other complicated contraceptives are required to avoid pregnancy. If a male decides that he would like to have children at some point in the future, there is a possibility that a vasectomy can be reversed, too.

Who Performs a Vasectomy?

A vasectomy is typically performed by a urologist, who is a specialist in the medical and surgical treatment of conditions related to the male reproductive system and urinary tract. In some cases, other healthcare providers with appropriate training and qualifications, such as general surgeons or family medicine physicians, may also perform vasectomies.

During a vasectomy, the vas deferens, which are the tubes that carry sperm from the testicles to the urethra, are either cut, tied, or sealed to prevent the release of sperm during ejaculation. This procedure is considered a permanent form of birth control, although it can sometimes be reversed through a more complex surgical procedure called vasectomy reversal.

Vasectomy vs. Birth Control

The following is an overview of some of the reasons why some men may prefer a vasectomy over other forms of birth control:

  • Some women may not be able to take birth control safely, such as birth control pills or shots.
  • Generally speaking, vasectomies have a very high success rate. Therefore, there is a much lower risk of an accidental pregnancy when compared to other birth control options, such as medications and condoms. The reason is that sperm is absent from the semen, and without sperm, a woman’s egg cannot be fertilized.
  • Vasectomies are safer and are much less invasive than tubal ligations; female birth control surgeries. With tubal ligation, a woman’s fallopian tubes are tied off, thus preventing eggs from reaching the uterus, so they cannot be fertilized. Tubal ligations are extremely complex and very invasive, and there is a much higher risk of complications.
  • In couples who carry inheritable genes that can pose the risk of congenital defects in children, a vasectomy can prevent pregnancy if they fear passing a disorder onto a child.

The reasons that men decide to get a vasectomy vary. No matter the reason, before deciding to proceed with a vasectomy procedure, it is important to carefully consider whether or not it is the right decision for you and/or your family. If you are married or in a long-term, committed relationship, your spouse or partner should be considered in the decision.

If you are single, you should consider whether or not you will want to have children in the future, or how a future spouse would react if she discovered that you have had a vasectomy. In other words, a vasectomy is a big decision, and it is not one that should be made lightly.

Permanent Birth Control for Men

A vasectomy is a generally safe and effective form of permanent birth control for men. The average age of a man who gets a vasectomy is 30 to 40 years old. While this is the average age, it is possible to get a vasectomy as young as 16 years old in some states. Be advised, no matter your age, to carefully consider the decision and weigh the outcome of the procedure before proceeding.

How Vasectomy Compares to other Forms of Birth Control?


The attentive, compassionate physicians, providers, and staff at Adult Pediatric Urology & Urogynecology are committed to providing innovative, quality patient care in our state-of-the-art facility.

From screening and prevention to treatment and recovery, our health professionals will be there for you. Our team of dedicated physicians has been serving residents of Nebraska, Iowa, and South Dakota for more than 25 years.

Contact us today