Vasectomy is one of the few options men have to manage their reproductive capacity and take on a more equitable role in pregnancy prevention. While the method is underused throughout the United States, the southern states have a lower prevalence rate compared to the rest of the country. Existing survey research does not assess what men know or think about the procedure as a means of understanding why this is the case. We created and conducted an exploratory survey to assess men’s knowledge, attitudes, and information-seeking behaviors about vasectomy in the Southern United States. We used targeted Facebook advertising to recruit men ages 25–70 years living in 7 southern states to complete an online survey (n = 397). Using regression analyses, we identify that participants who had a vasectomy knew more about the procedure than participants who had not. Participants who had not had a vasectomy had less positive attitudes about the procedure across all six attitude subscales compared to participants with vasectomies. We highlight potential avenues for future research to understand why this may be the case. Finally, the majority of participants knew someone who had had a vasectomy. This suggests that men disclose having a vasectomy to others. The interpersonal dynamics around vasectomy decision-making and disclosure remain unknown and a viable area for future research. Findings from this exploratory survey may be used by public health officials interested in implementing campaigns to increase knowledge about vasectomy and reduce stigma, which may encourage more positive attitudes about the procedure.
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Published in American Journal of Men's Health, Volume 14, Issue 4, 2020.
This article, by Ashley L. White, Rachel E. Davis, Deborah L. Billings, and Emily S. Mann, is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/) which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage).
White, A. L., Davis, R. E., Billings, D. L., & Mann, E. S. (2020). Men’s vasectomy knowledge, attitudes, and information-seeking behaviors in the Southern United States: Results from an exploratory survey. American Journal of Men’s Health, 14(4). https://doi.org/10.1177/1557988320949368