A growing number of men in Kenya are undergoing vasectomies, a leading reproductive heath organisation in the country has told the BBC.
“We have received a lot of requests from men. However, we cannot disclose the number due to client confidentiality,” said the director of Marie Stopes Kenya.
Inviolata Wanyama added that Kenyans were increasingly aware of equitable gender roles and men were keen to “be supportive partners in the sexual and reproductive journey”.
Daniel (not his real name) had the vasectomy procedure on 15 October because he wanted to find a better way of family planning.
“My wife had gone through three caesarean deliveries, and I wasn’t willing to risk her life… I decided: ‘Why not help her?’ because sometimes we ask too much from women,” the 39 year old told the BBC.
He however says that vasectomy services should be accessible and “friendly” to men because he had had bad experiences at other centres which made demeaning inquiries.
“Is it for you? Are you married? Why would you want a vasectomy? It’s your wife who should take charge of family planning,” Daniel was told.
He says he has not experienced any significant effect since having the procedure done.
Marie Stopes Kenya will offer free vasectomy services for four days ahead of World Vasectomy Day on 18 November.
Vasectomy is a surgical procedure to cut or seal the tubes that carry a man’s sperm to permanently prevent pregnancy, according to the UK’s National Health Service (NHS)
It can be reversed, but this is not guaranteed.
“If a reversal is carried out within 10 years of your vasectomy, the success rate is about 55%. This falls to 25% if your reversal is carried out more than 10 years after,” the NHS says.
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