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Historic shift as more men than women get 'the snip'

Finland's battle for gender equality took a step forward last year, when for the first time ever more men were sterilised than women.

Nukkepariskunta puiston penkillä.
Image: Henrietta Hassinen / Yle

More men than women are going under the knife for sterililisation procedures. According to the Institute for Health and Welfare THL, last year for the first time more than half of sterilisation procedures were performed on men.

In 2016 some 2,700 men underwent the operation compared to 2,100 women. According to THL, the trend is European-wide, as fewer women are opting for the procedure while male sterilisation is either increasing or holding steady.

Sterilisations in Finland peaked during the 1990s, and have declined since then as people wait longer to start families and new hormonal contraception methods have been developed.

In Finland anyone aged over 30 can be sterilised, with most operations occurring in the 35-40 age group.

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