Danny Dalians had long worried about what would happen when he became a father, because his job as a truck driver kept him out of the house most of the week.

But after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June, the 31-year-old IndependenceMissouri, a man decided it was time to take action and jumped at the chance to sign up for a free vasectomy.

“These are grim circumstances in which I made this decision,” he said as he wheeled a load of cardboard boxes through Kansas this week.

The vasectomy he plans to have next month is part of an effort that involves Planned Parenthood and a doctor with a mobile vasectomy clinic. Sixty vasectomies will be offered over three days at Planned Parenthood clinics in St. Louis, Springfield and Joplin to uninsured patients over three days amid what the clinics say is a surge in demand for the procedure.

Then, Dr. Esgar Guarin plans to hit the road next week with his mobile clinic — a car decorated with large images of sperm that his friends jokingly call “The Nutcracker” — to offer 40 more free vasectomies in several Iowa cities.

Guarin also plans to offer discounted vasectomies this month at his regular clinic in the Des Moines area.

The effort is part of World Vasectomy Day, originally a one-day event that now spans year-round with multiple events in November.

“This is a very special moment in reproductive rights United States. And we need to talk about that,” he said, adding that vasectomies are performed far less often than tubal ligation for female sterilization, even though they are cheaper, have a shorter recovery time and require a local rather than a general method. , anesthesia.

Guarin, who serves on the medical advisory board for World Vasectomy Day, helped offer vasectomies at Planned Parenthood in St. Louis last year to raise awareness of the procedure. This effort was so popular that the decision was made to expand it to other cities even before the overthrow of Roe caused a spike in demand.

In July alone, Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis and Southwest Missouri region performed 42 vasectomies, compared to 10 in the same month last year. The number of female sterilizations that month rose to 18 from three in July 2021.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has heard similar reports from across the country that more patients are turning to tubal ligation. Laura Lindberg, a professor at the Rutgers University School of Public Health in New Jersey, said Laura Lindberg, a professor at the School of Public Health in New Jersey.

For example, Planned Parenthood does not yet have national sterilization numbers for this year. However, its national webpage has seen a 53% increase in searches for vasectomy information over the past 100 days, the spokesman said.

Data from Google Trends shows that searches for vasectomy spiked briefly after the draft majority decision in Dobbs was leaked, but then peaked a few days after the court released its decision in late June.

Dr. Doug Stein, a urological surgeon at the Tampa-St. Petersburg, Fla., said patient registrations for his practice tripled immediately after the Dobbs decision, with many patients under the age of 30.

“I think everyone is busier since the Dobbs decision,” said Stein, who co-founded World Vasectomy Day.

Dr. Arnold Bullock, a urologist in St. Louis who performs about 35 vasectomies a month, said patients waited about a month for the procedure before the U.S. Supreme Court decision, but now wait two to three months.

In Texas, Dr. Kushik Shaw said his Austin Institute of Urology saw a surge when Texas passed a tough abortion law last year, and another, bigger one after the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling, so it’s now doing 50% more procedures. Many are for men who don’t want children, he said, and saw access to abortion as another option if birth control doesn’t work as planned.

“It really brought family planning to the forefront,” he said of losing access to abortion.

Lawmakers are responding to growing demand. The California law, which will take effect in 2024, would make vasectomy cheaper by allowing patients with private insurance plans to get the procedure at no additional cost beyond what they pay in monthly premiums.

Dr. Margaret Baum, medical director of Planned Parenthood for St. Louis and Southwest Missouri, will work with Guarin to provide free vasectomies. She has talked a lot with patients in recent months about permanent sterilization and said there is a sense of urgency.

“I think people’s fear, No. 1, is that abortion is not available, which is a very real and legitimate fear and reality for a large portion of people in our country. And then I think people are also really afraid of what might be next,” she said.

A vasectomy involves cutting and sealing the tube that carries the sperm, preventing it from entering the ejaculate. Baum said she talks to patients to keep them calm, sometimes including a playlist that includes “Great Balls of Fire” and “The Nutcracker Suite.” Most patients make a full recovery in a couple of days.

Dalians, a truck driver, said he no longer wants to put the responsibility of birth control on partners, especially since abortion is more difficult to obtain. His home state of Missouri was one of the first in the country to have a law banning abortion at any stage of pregnancy.

“I don’t want to sound like I’m unhappy that I’m doing this, but it’s a situation where my hands were kind of forced because of Roe v. Wade,” he said.

“I feel like because of the extraordinary costs of having a baby in the United States, I’ve been kind of priced out,” he said. – And here I was, as it were, cashing in my chips. It’s the right ethical decision for me, but it’s not something that’s done lightly.”


Associated Press writer John Hanna in Topeka, Kansas, and news researcher Jennifer Farrar in New York contributed to this report.