(WJBK) - March has become a popular time of year for men to consider getting vasectomies. The idea is that if you get the procedure now, you can spend a few days on the couch watching college basketball tournament games while you recover.
Though it's a good idea, the truth is, vasectomy rates are very low in the United States. But three longtime friends decided to have it done together -- at the urging of their wives -- and shared their experiences
John, Paul and Basilio have been close friends for years. They have a lot in common, and have found themselves and their families at a similar stage in life. Lately, those conversations focused on a topic most guys tend to avoid.
"Men don't really talk about health concerns together, and let alone something as intimate as saying, 'I'm going to go get a vasectomy. Hey, you want to come along?'" says Dr. Jesse Mills at UCLA Health.
But at the urging of their wives, who have also become close friends, that's just what these three did.
So the trio - the so-called Three Vascateers - made back-to-back-to-back appointments with Dr. Mills and have brought to light an issue many men simply overlook.
"We talk about women's health and most of it focuses around reproductive issues, but guys are a part of that equation and they're a part of that discussion as well," says Dr. Mills.
Although vasectomies hardly make it into the discussion.
Only one in 10 eligible men get vasectomies in the U.S. - half the rate of men in countries - like Canada or the UK. Compared to sterilization surgeries for women, vasectomies are quicker, safer and require less recovery time. Although, these three took the opportunity to gain some sympathy. They say they collaborated on how they could milk it as much as possible so they didn't have to do chores around the house.
But the truth is, most men are back to normal in a few days after a vasectomy and these men urge more to consider it.
"After we've gone through so much with delivering babies, it's just a nice gesture to have a very mini procedure and have that taken care of for us," says the wife of one of the friends.
Dr. Mills says typical recovery is 2-3 days on the couch, which is why some men choose to have procedures during March basketball tournaments.