As a urologist, I perform a lot of vasectomies, which is a procedure that prevents men from getting a woman pregnant. Where I work, we have pioneered the ‘no needle, no scalpel’ method, which was developed in China and brought over to the United States. Without question, vasectomies are one of the best forms of birth control for men. Once the proper follow-up period is over and the man has been tested to confirm he has no sperm in his semen, the effectiveness is 99.9% effective, which is as good as it gets.
For women, there are equally effective birth control options. Surgical sterilization, intrauterine devices (IUDs) and several types of implants are also 99.9% effective when correctly placed or performed.
Other types of birth control are much less effective, mostly because people don’t always use them correctly or consistently. For example, birth control pills are about 91%effective, as are hormonal birth control patches and vaginal rings. The effectiveness of sponges, cervical caps, diaphragms and male condoms are worse, ranging from about 88% effective to 82% effective. The least effective methods of all are so-called “natural” methods that rely on a woman monitoring her own menstrual cycle and abstaining from sex during times she thinks she is fertile.
The bottom line, in my opinion, is that for couples who are sure they don’t want any more children, vasectomy is by far the best option. It’s safe, effective, and hassle-free.