Interesting Facts About Vasectomy Reversal
Did you know?: There’s no time limit on when a vasectomy reversal can be performed. While a number of years since the vasectomy does have an impact, patients may enjoy high success rates even decades later.
While many men consider undergoing a vasectomy reversal, a procedure known for its safety and effectiveness, it's essential to have a clear understanding of the process itself. In this post, we’ll explore some interesting facts about vasectomy reversal that you should know before considering the procedure.
There Are Multiple Vasectomy Reversal Methods
A vasectomy reversal involves a surgeon reconnecting the severed ends of the vas deferens, the tube carrying sperm from the testicles to the penis. There are different reattachment methods used:
- Vasovasostomy involves a surgeon sewing back together the severed end of each vas.
- Vasoepididymostomy, a more complex procedure, involves the severed vas being reattached directly to the epididymis, the tube in each testicle that holds and transports sperm. Typically, this is performed if a vasovasostomy cannot be done or would be ineffective.
The specific technique cannot be decided until the time of surgery, by analyzing the vas deferens fluid to see sperm. Both may be needed, as the more time since your vasectomy, the more likely you’ll require a vasoepididymostomy on one or both sides.
Vasectomy Reversals Typically Are Not Painful
Performed in a hospital or clinic using anesthesia, a vasectomy reversal is generally a pretty painless experience for most patients. You’ll likely go home that day, with recovery lasting about 2 weeks. While rare, some potential risks may include:
- Chronic, persistent pain
- Testicular tissue loss, requiring surgery
- Bleeding, usually within the scrotum, leading to painful swelling
- Infections at the surgery site
- Anesthesia side effects
- Ongoing absence of sperm from the ejaculate
- High-riding testicles, caused by vas removal or a failed procedure
Vasectomy Reversal Success Factors
Of the 300,000 American men having vasectomies annually, about 3-6% undergo a reversal. Effectiveness is generally measured by patency (i.e., the return of sperm to your ejaculate) and pregnancy. For some, sperm may return to the ejaculate in as little as two months after the surgery. For others, it can take up to 12 months. The return of sperm to ejaculate can be impacted by a number of factors, including testicular issues and the original vasectomy’s location. For example, when performed close to the testicle, vasectomies may be more difficult to reverse, requiring a vasoepididymostomy.
Your Choice of Vasectomy Reversal Surgeon Is Important
Vasectomy reversals must be performed by specially trained microsurgeons. As the Medical Director of Male Fertility & Sexual Medicine Specialists (MFS), Dr. Martin Bastuba, a board-certified vasectomy surgeon – one of the nation’s 2% of urologists receiving specialized microsurgical training — regularly performs this procedure. He’s achieved great success, including a patency success rate of 98% and a pregnancy success rate of 65-75% (the average is 55%).
See if Vasectomy Reversal Is Right For You
A vasectomy reversal can be beneficial, but you first need to know what the procedure entails to prepare for and ensure a more successful outcome. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Martin Bastuba, please contact us for an appointment.