The external male genitalia consists of the penis and testicles. Other structures such as the vas deferens and epididymis form part of the male genital tract.

The testicles lie within tissues and skin that is known as the scrotum. Sperm and the male hormone testosterone are produced by the testicles.

The epididymis is a duct that stores sperm. It is located over the top and around the back of each testicle. Sperm is transported from each epididymis to the penis by a tube on each side called the vas deferens.

What is a vasectomy?

Vasectomy refers to the procedure used for permanent male sterilisation. The vas deferens is a tube on both the left and right side which transports sperm from the epididymis/testicle to the ejaculatory ducts before entering the penis on ejaculation.

A vasectomy procedure cuts and seals/ties each vas deferens tube to prevent sperm entering the ejaculate. It is commonly performed under local anaesthetic. You will be advised of the time it takes after the procedure and the required tests before sterilisation can be confirmed as being successful.

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