Where pregnancy is not possible, there is no need for an abortion. The fact that the US Supreme Court overturned the right to abortion seems to be motivating more and more men to have themselves sterilized.
The fact that the Supreme Court announced the end of the right to abortion apparently not only caused Americans to stage nationwide protest marches. According to information from US media, men are showing solidarity and are looking for an alternative. The idea: where pregnancy is not possible, there is no need for an abortion. The demand for vasectomies, a form of sterilization for men, is said to have increased enormously in recent days.
A hospital in Cleveland said at the request of the US news channel “NBC News” that they usually receive three to four vasectomy requests a day. But from Friday to Wednesday alone there were 90. A urologist from Miami told the broadcaster that he was now considering working on Saturdays as well – the phone rang so often in his clinic. A doctor from Kansas City reports something similar: “Since Friday, the number of people who want to undergo a vasectomy has increased by 900%.”
A vasectomy is a surgical procedure that renders men permanently infertile. The doctor cuts through the patient’s vas deferens, in which the sperm are stored. In the USA (and also in Germany), insurance companies do not have to cover the costs of vasectomies. The intervention can theoretically be reversed. However, medical professionals advise treating a vasectomy as a one-time decision.
According to the Washington Post, it is different with contraceptives for women – their costs are covered as a “preventive service” under the Affordable Care Act.
“Men have to take responsibility”
The Supreme Court, the highest court in the United States, last Friday passed the landmark decision Roe v. Wade and with it the constitutional right to abortion. The result was nationwide protests and a wave of lawsuits in state courts. “Many of the men say they’ve been contemplating a vasectomy for a while, and the Roe v. Wade decision was just the final factor that tipped them off and led them to submit the online application,” he explained Urologist Doug Stein told the Washington Post that he had promoted the procedure with other advocates in child care facilities. “At least 60 or 70 percent” of callers mentioned the Supreme Court ruling, according to Stein’s associate John Curington.
“When [the draft] came out, I knew things weren’t going to get any better, at least not any time soon,” a 26-year-old man told NBC News. “Men are part of the pregnancy equation and we have to take responsibility,” said Jerald Stiedaman, 46, of Illinois. He made an appointment for a vasectomy on Friday.
The ban on abortion harbors unexpected risks
“I’m very, very, very happy and proud to hear that men are taking responsibility for their reproductive health and their reproductive choices. I think that for far too long in this country, men have been kept out of the conversation and that women are for it are responsible, and both parties should be,” Philip Werthman, director of the Los Angeles Center for Male Reproductive Medicine and Vasectomy Reversal, told NBC News. At the same time, however, the doctor warned men against making hasty decisions.
According to the Washington Post, several trade magazines and professional associations warn that the Supreme Court ruling could have unforeseen effects on health care, far beyond the issue of abortion. Whether maternal mortality, miscarriage rate or in vitro fertilization – the risks are unpredictable.
Sources: “NBC News”; “Washington Post”