• Symptoms of Male Infertility

    Fertility difficulties affect nearly one in seven couples who are trying to have a baby. “Infertility” is defined as the inability to conceive despite having frequent, unprotected intercourse for a year or longer. In up to half of all cases, male infertility is at least partially to blame. Consider what male infertility looks like and how you can combat it.

    Causes of Male Infertility

    Low fertility in men is a complex subject. In short, semen must contain enough healthy, functional sperm to produce a pregnancy. There are many possible reasons why this may not be the case, including:

    • Varicocele (swelling of the veins that drain the testicle)
    • Infections, including epididymitis, orchitis, gonorrhea, or HIV
    • Retrograde ejaculation
    • Dysfunctional immune cells that attack sperm
    • Cancer and nonmalignant tumors
    • Undescended testicles
    • Hormone imbalances
    • Tubule defects or blockages
    • Chromosome defects
    • Erectile dysfunction or premature ejaculation
    • Celiac disease
    • Certain medications
    • Vasectomy or other surgeries on the testicles, scrotum, or prostate
    • Exposure to industrial chemicals, heavy metals, or radiation
    • Overheated testicles
    • Drug, tobacco, and alcohol use
    • Obesity

    Symptoms of Male Infertility

    Apart from being unable to conceive a child, there may be no other indications that you are infertile. However, depending on the underlying cause, these additional symptoms may be present:

    • Sexual dysfunction, such as difficulty maintaining an erection, limited ejaculation, or low sex drive
    • Pain, swelling, or lump in the testicle area
    • Abnormal breast growth (gynecomastia)
    • Decreased facial or body hair

    Treatments for Male Infertility

    If you are struggling to get your partner pregnant, consider that simple lifestyle changes can make a difference. Here’s what to try first:

    • Quit smoking, limit your alcohol use, and avoid illicit drugs.
    • Maintain a healthy weight.
    • Reduce your stress level.
    • Steer clear of chemicals and other environmental hazards.
    • Avoid tightly fitting underwear and jeans.
    • Don’t take steroids for bodybuilding or sporting purposes.

    More formal treatments for male infertility include:

    • Surgery to correct obstructed tubules or reverse a prior vasectomy
    • Antibiotic treatment for underlying infections
    • Medication or counseling for erectile dysfunction or premature ejaculation
    • Hormone treatments and medications

    One in eight male infertility cases are treatable, allowing couples to get pregnant naturally after receiving the proper care. If male infertility treatment doesn’t work, you may still be a candidate for assisted reproductive technology (ART). This involves collecting sperm to be inserted into the female reproductive system or used with in vitro fertilization or intracytoplasmic sperm injection. Your doctor might also suggest considering a sperm donor or adopting a child.

    Dr. Joshua Green of the Center for Vasectomy Reversal is a leader in helping men overcome infertility problems. All infertility procedures, including vasectomy reversal, are performed with state-of-the-art equipment, including a high-powered operating microscope. Patients can expect concierge-level care and friendly staff interactions every step of the way. To learn more, please call 941-894-6428 or schedule a free consultation online.

  • 11 Tips for Choosing the Right Baby Name

    As an expectant parent, choosing a baby name can be both thrilling and intimidating. After all, the name you bestow upon your little one will be part of their identity for the rest of their lives. Here are 11 tips to help you choose a baby name you won’t regret.

    1. Avoid trendy misspellings: Ask yourself—will my child have to spell or explain their name to everyone they meet? Will a chic pop-culture reference sounds silly in 10 years? Will it be impossible to ever find the name on a keychain souvenir? If you answer “yes” to any of these questions, consider choosing a different name.
    2. Consider the classics: Not all traditional names are “boring.” If Sarah, Mary, John, and Will don’t do it for you, think Clarice, Audrey, Oliver, and Theodore.
    3. Seek inspiration from your family tree: Consider naming your baby after a significant family member, even if it’s “just” the middle name.
    4. Honor your heritage: Search for names derived from your country of origin. You’re bound to fall in love with at least one.
    5. Look up meanings: A name might sound nice, but this step ensures you don’t end up choosing one that implies something horrible. Or, if you simply love a name like Calvin, you can come up with a one-liner to jokingly explain why “bald” is the perfect meaning behind your baby’s name.
    6. Contemplate nicknames and teasing potential: To help prevent bullying on the playground, brainstorm possible ways other kids could construe the name you’ve picked out.
    7. Write down the initials: There are plenty of unpleasant two- and three-letter combinations. Remember this when considering your baby’s initials.
    8. Say it out loud: Test the rhythmic flow. Maybe what you had planned for the middle name would work better as the first name after all.
    9. Find out if anyone famous has that name: There’s a reason no babies today are named Adolf or Ebenezer. Search your baby name choices online to make sure they don’t reveal a serial killer or adult movie star with that same name.
    10. Know that you can change your mind: There’s nothing wrong with realizing the name you picked out doesn’t fit once you see your baby for the first time. Even if you have already announced to everyone what name you have chosen, you have until you leave the hospital to make your final decision.
    11. Consider keeping the name a secret: Unless you want to risk receiving unsolicited feedback about what you should or shouldn’t name your baby, consider keeping your ideas between you and your partner.

    Does thinking about baby names make you interested in getting your vasectomy reversed? At the Center for Vasectomy Reversal, we specialize in helping men and women become parents. Our experienced physician, Dr. Joshua Green, performs fast, effective procedures from our state-of-the-art clinic in Sarasota, FL. To learn more about vasectomy reversal, please call us at 941-894-6428 or schedule your free consultation online.

  • Help Getting Pregnant: Things You and Your Partner Can Do

    The journey into parenthood can be emotionally charged. Once you and your partner are ready to conceive, follow these tips to increase your fertility.

    Know Your “Fertile Window”

    A man’s sperm is most likely to reach a woman’s fertile egg on ovulation day and the five days leading up to it. Most women ovulate about 12 to 16 days before starting each period, so track your menstrual cycle on a calendar to help you better predict when you might be ovulating. Then, have sex with your partner every other day during this six-day “fertile window.”

    Maintain a Healthy Body Weight

    Being overweight makes it harder to get pregnant, but so does being underweight. Strive for a body max index (BMI) in the “normal” range of 18.5 to 24.9. At the same time, don’t exercise too much. Strenuous physical activity could interfere with ovulation, so work with your doctor to determine a moderate exercise plan that will work for you.

    Eat a Balanced Diet

    In addition to helping you achieve a healthy weight, eating a balanced diet provides your body with fertility-promoting nutrients. While trying to get pregnant, eat more:

    • Fruits and vegetables
    • Lean protein
    • Whole grains
    • Lentils and beans

    Then, eat less:

    • High-mercury fish
    • Soda
    • Caffeine
    • Trans fats

    Take Prenatal Vitamins

    It doesn’t hurt to start taking prenatal vitamins as soon as you start trying to conceive. Finding a prenatal vitamin that agrees with your system now makes it easy to stay on it during pregnancy. Choose a supplement that provides at least 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid to promote healthy brain and spine development in your future fetus. Dietary sources of folic acid include leafy greens, broccoli, beans, citrus fruits, orange juice, and fortified cereals.

    Stop Smoking and Drinking

    Smoking causes fertility issues in men and women alike. Even secondhand smoke can affect the chances of becoming pregnant, so keep away. Also, because alcohol consumption can cause birth defects, a sexually active woman should stop drinking as soon as she goes off birth control. Cannabis and other recreational drugs should be avoided as well while trying to conceive.


    Research shows that high stress levels make it more difficult to get pregnant. Of course, relaxing is easier said than done. Try reducing stress in your daily life with these tips:

    • Take a walk.
    • Learn deep breathing exercises.
    • Get plenty of sleep.
    • Find activities that make you smile and laugh.
    • Try yoga or meditation.
    • Go on vacation.
    • Catch up with an old friend.
    • Avoid overbooking yourself.

    At the Center for Vasectomy Reversal, we love helping men and women become parents. If you’re ready to begin your journey into parenthood, consider a vasectomy reversal performed under the direction of Dr. Joshua Green. Our state-of-the-art clinic in Sarasota, FL provides a comfortable setting to receive your fast, effective procedure. To learn more, please call us at 941-894-6428 or schedule your free consultation online.

  • Can COVID-19 Affect your Reproductive Organs?

    Information about COVID-19 continues to evolve, and we learn new things about it all the time. Because we know that seasonal flu and other viruses with high fevers tend to negatively impact male fertility, there’s been concern that this may be true of COVID-19 as well. Recent evidence seems to indicate that this concern is valid.

    One reason that viruses are thought to be harmful to a man’s fertility is that high fevers heat the testicles and damage sperm. For weeks or even months after recovering from influenza, for example, patients may experience abnormal sperm as well as a decrease in sperm count, motility, and genetic health. Since a major symptom of COVID-19 is a high fever, it’s not a leap to assume that the same will be true of that illness. Fortunately, though they may linger, the affects of a fever on male fertility are still temporary and fully reversible.

    The information we have about COVID-19, however, is still evolving. Because we’re in the early days of understanding this illness, it could be a long time before we truly understand who is at risk, how and when problems develop, how quickly they resolve, and whether they persist. There are a few different aspects of COVID-19 that researchers are looking at closely in regard to male fertility.

    A big question is whether the virus gets into the testicles. If it does, then the question becomes one of how long it remains and how much it damages the cells that produce sperm and testosterone. Recent research done by American, Chinese, and European scientists indicates that many COVID-19 patients have significant testicular cell damage without the virus actually being present in the testicles themselves. How could this be?

    One thing raising concerns among researchers is the protein enzyme to which the coronavirus binds, known as ACE2. This enzyme is on the surface of many cells in the blood vessels, heart, lungs, kidneys, gastrointestinal tract, and reproductive orders, and it provides a gateway for the virus to infect these cells. Because the testes have high levels of ACE2, they’re likely to be affected. Studies have demonstrated that the virus affects hormone levels, diminishes sperm quality and concentration, and can reduce semen volume.

    The good news it that COVID-19 does not seem to be sexually transmittable. As to long-term effects, there’s no way to know at this point whether the damage done by the virus is reversible. For men who have had COVID-19, it’s advisable to see a urologist about any reproductive concerns.

    If you’re interested in reversing your vasectomy and you’re looking for an experienced professional surgical team, the Center for Vasectomy Reversal is here for you. Under the direction of Dr. Joshua Green, our team provides state-of-the-art treatment for men who need a reversal of their vasectomy or have other fertility concerns. To learn more, contact us through our website, or call 941-894-6428 for a free consultation.

  • Things you can do to Improve Your Sperm Count

    A low sperm count is one of the most common factors in male infertility. If you’re struggling to conceive, it’s important to see your doctor. However, if your problem is low sperm count, you may be able to improve it naturally through a few simple lifestyle changes.

    • Stay active. Regular exercise increases testosterone, which improves the quality of semen. Bear in mind that too much exercise can reduce testosterone levels, so it’s important to strike a healthy balance. Some sources indicate that weightlifting and outdoor exercise may be particularly beneficial.
    • Lost weight. One benefit of exercise is that it can help reduce your weight, which can increase your sperm count. A recent study showed that men at a healthy weight have more mobile sperm than those at an unhealthy BMI, and weight loss has been shown to significantly increase semen volume, concentration, mobility, and sperm health. If you have a lot of weight to lose, losing even a little bit can help.
    • Relax! When you’re under stress, sex is less satisfying, and fertility is reduced. Additionally, stress can raise cortisol levels, inhibiting testosterone levels. Taking time to unwind every day can help boost your fertility. Make sure to get enough sleep, too, because men who get seven to eight hours of sleep each night have better fertility health.
    • Mind your substances. Don’t drink heavily, don’t smoke, or use tobacco, and avoid illegal drug use. If you smoke or have a substance abuse problem, get help from your doctor.
    • Eat a healthy diet. Pack your diet with nutrient-dense foods, including citrus fruits, green vegetables, nuts and seeds, plant-based oils, beef, and chicken. Focus on antioxidants, which can boost your sperm count. Consider supplements, because vitamins like D, C, E, and CoQ10 and minerals like zinc can help sperm health. Because plant estrogen, called phytoestrogens, reduce men’s sperm production, it’s best to avoid consuming too much soy.
    • Clean up your environment. Environmental toxins may affect your sperm count, and while you can’t control pollution, you can limit your exposure to harmful substances in your environment. Substances like pesticides, painting materials, herbicides, degreasers, and solvents can all negatively impact fertility. Radiation and x-rays are harmful to sperm production, and overheating the testicles by wearing tight clothing, visiting a sauna, or working with a laptop in your lap can also lower your sperm count.
    • Herbal supplements may help. If you’re interested in natural food supplements, you might try holistic remedies like fenugreek, Tribulus terrestris, ashwagandha, or maca root.

    At the Center for Vasectomy Reversal, we love helping men improve their fertility and build their families. Under the direction of Dr. Joshua Green, our team provides state-of-the-art treatment for men who need a reversal of their vasectomy or have other fertility concerns. To learn more, contact us through our website, or call 941-894-6428 for a free consultation.

  • Tips for Older Dads

    Over the past several decades, the average age of first time parents in the United States has steadily gotten older. People are waiting longer to start families, taking the time to establish themselves in their careers and build some financial stability before they procreate. There are pros and cons to parenting at a later age, but we’ve got some tips to help older dads be great dads.

    • Recognize that there are a few drawbacks, but it’s nothing you can’t handle. You may have some health concerns, and you may not have the energy of your younger years. It may take a while to adjust to parenthood if you’re set in your ways, and you may keenly feel the generation gap between you and your kids. What’s more, you may find yourself needing to care for aging parents when you’d really prefer to have grandparents that help with the kids. The good news is that you’ve got plenty of experience managing your life and dealing with stress, and you’ll step up to the challenges of parenting exactly as you have with every other challenge you’ve faced.
    • Remember, there are tons of benefits, as well. Older parents are typically more financially secure, and many have more time to spend with their kids than they would have in their career-building years. When you’re older, you know more about gratitude and appreciating the little things, because you understand how quickly time passes. This can give you a more positive attitude toward, and a greater appreciation of parenting. Additionally, you probably have a stable relationship, and you definitely have more life experience than younger parents.
    • Now that you’ve considered the pros and cons, stop the comparison. Don’t compare yourself to younger parents, because there are good and bad things about parenting at every age. Instead, focus on the blessings in your life, embrace your strengths, and set aside time for things that help you enjoy life and keep your mind sharp.
    • Stay healthy. Embrace a healthy lifestyle, eating well, sleeping well, and staying physically active. Challenge yourself to keep up with your little ones, because it will help keep you feeling young. Play actively with your kids and prepare nutritious meals together, so that you can set an example for them in terms of healthy exercise as well as a healthy diet.
    • Connect with your children emotionally. Make sure to embrace the caregiving aspect of parenting, even if you’re the primary breadwinner. Men who are emotionally involved with their children tend to be more satisfied with their lives and less stressed by their work.

    At the Center for Vasectomy Reversal, we love helping people build their families and experience the joy of parenting. Under the direction of Dr. Joshua Green, our team provides state-of-the-art treatment for men who need a reversal of their vasectomy or have other fertility concerns. To learn more, contact us through our website, or call 941-894-6428 for a free consultation.



  • Can Old Vasectomies Be Reversed?

    Vasectomy reversal has come a long way over the past several decades, and the technology has improved so much that the procedure has a high success rate. There is some concern, though, about vasectomies that are over 15 years old. Can they be reversed? How does the success rate differ between these “old” vasectomies and more recent surgeries?

    Good news: older vasectomies are almost as easy to reverse as newer ones. Most men continue to produce sperm throughout their lives, so fatherhood is possible late in life. Sometimes an older vasectomy can develop a blockage in addition to the vasectomy, which makes it more complicated to restore sperm flow. Fortunately, advances in microsurgical techniques mean this is not an insurmountable obstacle.

    If there’s more than one point of obstruction blocking the flow of sperm, the surgeon may choose to perform an epididymovasostomy. While a typical vasectomy reversal involves removing the blockage and reattaching the severed ends of the vas, an epididymovasostomy is more complex. In this procedure the original blockage is removed, just as in the vasovasostomy, and the semen is examined for sperm. If sperm are not present, it indicates a second blockage. In this case, the vas deferens is connected to the epididymis, rather than simply having the ends connected back together.

    New research indicates that the rates of moving ejaculated sperm counts after a reversal are close in old and new vasectomies. The younger vasectomies have an 88 percent chance of having a healthy sperm count, while the older ones have a 65 percent chance. The sperm counts in the two groups were identical, averaging 55 million sperm. This is encouraging, because it means that even old vasectomy reversals have a good chance of restoring fertility.

    Of course, a successful reversal does not guarantee pregnancy. There are many factors that come into play in fertility. If a couple cannot conceive after a vasectomy has been successfully reversed and the sperm count is good, there may be an undiagnosed fertility issue with the female partner. The most important factor in the vasectomy reversal itself is the skill of the surgical team. Microsurgery is extremely complicated, and success requires the work of a skillful and experienced surgeon. A surgeon who is well-versed in vasectomy reversal and proficient at microsurgical techniques can often successfully reverse a vasectomy that’s 20 years old or older.

    If you’re interested in reversing your vasectomy and you’re looking for an experienced professional surgical team, the Center for Vasectomy Reversal is here for you. Under the direction of Dr. Joshua Green, our team provides state-of-the-art treatment for men who need a reversal of their vasectomy or have other fertility concerns. To learn more, contact us through our website, or call 941-894-6428 for a free consultation.


  • Celebrity Infertility Spotlight: Chrissy Teigen and the Heartbreak of Miscarriage

    Some celebrities are deeply protective of their privacy when it comes to their personal lives. Chrissy Teigen and John Legend are one couple who have been extremely open about theirs. They’ve talked openly about their struggles with infertility and IVF, and earlier this year shared their joy over a surprise pregnancy. Sadly, that pregnancy has ended in a miscarriage. Teigen has been candid about her devastation over the end of the pregnancy as well, and there’s something very beneficial about someone being so willing to share her joy and pain. It helps other women going through the rollercoaster ride of infertility know that they are not alone.

    Infertility affects about one in eight people. Often, it’s difficult to even discern the problem, and certainly, Chrissy Teigen’s experience illustrates this. Young and healthy, with a healthy husband, she struggled for years before undergoing IVF. In vitro fertilization is emotionally stressful and physically taxing, involving lifestyle changes, medications, and seemingly endless procedures. It doesn’t always work and sometimes ends in miscarriage. What’s more, many women go through this experience feeling alone because infertility is a taboo topic.

    Something else that’s taboo is miscarriage, though it’s an experience shared by as many as one in four women. For Chrissy Teigen, it happened at the end of last month. When celebrities are open about their joys and pain, it helps open dialogue about difficult topics. If you’ve suffered a miscarriage, there are a few things to remember.

    • It’s ok to talk about it. Talking about it can be beneficial, not just for you but for others. It may surprise you to discover how many people you know have had similar experiences. The loss of a pregnancy is an isolating event but talking about it can help you heal.
    • Take the time to grieve. It can be hard to cope after a miscarriage, and some feelings of grief can resurface much later, particularly on the anniversary of the loss or what would have been the baby’s birthday. Doing something meaningful to honor your baby may bring you some peace.
    • Be gentle with each other. You and your partner will go through this together, even if you feel like you’re going through it alone. Men sometimes don’t want to talk about things like this, but it doesn’t mean they don’t feel them deeply. After their miscarriage, John Legend wrote of the experience, “What an awesome gift it is to be able to bring life into the world. We’ve experienced the miracle, the power and joy of this gift, and now we’ve deeply felt its inherent fragility.”

    At the Center for Vasectomy Reversal, we’re committed to helping people build their families. Under the direction of Dr. Joshua Green, our team provides state-of-the-art treatment for men who need a reversal of their vasectomy or have other fertility concerns. To learn more, contact us through our website, or call 941-894-6428 for a free consultation.


  • How late is too late to have children?

    There’s a lot of talk about women and their biological clocks, but you don’t often hear all that much about men in that context. Why is that? Do men have a biological clock? Men can father children at much later ages than women can get pregnant, it’s true, but should they? Are there risks inherent in being an older father? How late is too late to have children?

    In fact, reproductive aging is a reality for both men and women. Just because men don’t hit menopause, that doesn’t mean there are no consequences associated with their advancing age. Both men and women experience declining fertility and hormone levels as they get older. Worse, the risk of health complications for the child also increases. When a father is older, the couple is likely to have more difficulty conceiving, a higher risk of miscarriage, and a higher potential for health problems in the baby.

    Women’s reproductive capability begins to decline around age 35, while men experience a more gradual decline that begins around 40. When a woman does conceive after age 35, it’s referred to as a geriatric pregnancy, and there’s a lot of focus on what could go wrong. Over 35, women are at higher risk of miscarriage, gestational diabetes, chromosome issues, high blood pressure, low birth weight, and caesarean delivery. Perhaps because the woman is the one carrying the child and going to the prenatal appointments, this is all well-known and well-established. However, research indicates that the genetic quality of a man’s sperm degrades as he ages as well.

    Unlike women, who have a finite number of eggs, men produce sperm throughout their lifetimes. The existing sperm replicates its DNA and splits, over and over, until late in a man’s life. Unfortunately, all that splitting means the DNA can change a little bit every time the process is repeated. The result is that the number of genetic mutations in a man’s sperm increases steadily and gradually as he ages. These mutations make it more likely to conceive a child with conditions like schizophrenia or autism.

    The good news is that even for older parents, the chance of having a child with a genetic disorder is still low. Understanding the facts about male fertility should, however, encourage people to consider beginning their families earlier or taking measures like egg freezing and sperm banking to allow them to postpone conception. Of course, there are also advantages to being an older parent. When people take time to establish themselves before they have kids, they’re better educated and more financially stable when they do start their families.

    At the Center for Vasectomy Reversal, we love helping people build their families. Under the direction of Dr. Joshua Green, our team provides state-of-the-art treatment for men who need a reversal of their vasectomy or have other fertility concerns. To learn more, contact us through our website, or call 941-894-6428 for a free consultation.

  • What to Expect after your Vasectomy Reversal

    If you’re preparing for a vasectomy reversal, you’ve already been through the experience of undergoing a vasectomy. Thinking about the recovery period after that procedure can give you a reasonably accurate idea of the discomfort you’ll have after your vasectomy reversal. Fortunately, the recovery period for this minimally invasive procedure is brief.

    We perform each vasectomy reversal as an outpatient procedure, at an accredited Surgery Center with a Board-Certified anesthesiologist. You’ll go home shortly after your procedure, but you’ll need someone to drive you because of the after-effects of the anesthesia. Because you’ve been anesthetized, you may experience generalized aches, fatigue, a sore throat, or nausea, but these symptoms should go away within 24 hours.

    For many men, the discomfort after a vasectomy reversal is not as bad as they’d expected it to be. The day after surgery is usually the worst in terms of pain and swelling, and that’s also when your doctor will remove your drains. Most of the time, the pain only lasts for 24-48 hours, although in some cases, men report pain for up to a week. This pain can be alleviated with oral pain relievers, and ice packs will help reduce scrotal swelling. It’s best to stay off your feet and keep your legs elevated in these first few days, applying the ice packs for 10 minutes every half hour while you’re awake. Don’t get the incision wet for the first 48 hours, and follow your doctor’s post-operative instructions carefully. It’s important to wear snug scrotal support for 30 days after your procedure, to keep pressure off of the incision.

    It surprises many men to learn that they can go back to work within a week and, in some cases, as few as two days. If your job is extremely active or requires heavy lifting, you may need to take a little longer before heading back. You won’t be ready for intense physical activity just yet, though you’ll be able to resume most of your normal activities in three to four weeks. You’ll need to refrain from sexual activity for at least three weeks after the procedure, but this probably won’t be difficult because of your discomfort during the healing process.

    About three weeks after your vasectomy reversal, you’ll be asked to provide a semen sample for analysis. While the return of sperm to semen does not guarantee conception, it’s still good news that vasectomy reversals have a high success rate for returning sperm. Additionally, success in achieving pregnancy after the procedure ranges from about 40 to over 90 percent.

    At the Center for Vasectomy Reversal, we pride ourselves on providing optimal surgical results and uncompromising, concierge-level patient care. Under the direction of Dr. Joshua Green, our team provides state-of-the-art treatment for men who need a reversal of their vasectomy or have other fertility concerns. To learn more, contact us through our website, or call 941-894-6428 for a free consultation.