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With the Economy Down, Vasectomy Rates Are Up
Date:3/20/2009

The expense of raising another child may be driving the trend, doctors say

FRIDAY, March 20 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors around the United States are reporting a sharp increase in the number of vasectomies performed since the economy soured last year, with one noting that many of his clients are from the beleaguered financial industry.

Their best guess is that the trend is due both to a decreased desire to have children because of the expense involved, and an increased desire to get such medical procedures done before their jobs -- and health insurance -- disappear.

Since November, Dr. Marc Goldstein, surgeon-in-chief of male reproductive medicine and surgery at the Cornell Institute for Reproductive Medicine in New York City, said his practice has seen about 48 percent more vasectomy consultations compared to the same time the previous year.

Nearly 50 percent of the patients in 2008 were employed within the financial industry, and more than 36 percent were seen since September, according to unpublished data from the Center for Male Reproductive Medicine and Microsurgery at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center.

Goldstein said his appointment secretary was the first to notice the uptick in the number of men requesting vasectomy consultations.

"I used to do one to two every Friday," he said. "Now I'm doing three on Fridays. There's been a significant increase."

"Nobody came in and said they were having a vasectomy because the [stock] market crashed," Goldstein added. "Most are saying, 'We've been thinking about it for a long time,' and [the crash] influenced their decision. They're saying with the cost of private school for three kids, they can't afford to have another one."

Dr. Harry Fisch, a professor of clinical urology at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center, in New York City, said: "The issue about kids is often a financia
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