A vasectomy is usually performed under local anaesthetic without sedation. Local anaesthetic vasectomy is safe, quick and painless. The 2015 national US Vasectomy guideline makes a positive recommendation that local anaesthetic is routine used: “Vasectomy should be performed with local anesthesia with or without oral sedation” (statement 5).
In The UK, almost all vasectomies are performed under local anaesthetic, and audit results from the primary care surgical association show very high levels of satisfaction.
There are very few patients who are not nervous about having a vasectomy. Thankfully, the vast majority say the procedure was nothing like they thought it would be.
Sedation is probably better suited to the minority who are particularly anxious. Full sedation requires an anaesthetist and is usually performed in a hospital setting.