What to Consider Before Having a Vasectomy Reversed

A vasectomy is a fairly straightforward procedure, an outpatient operation with few complications. A vasectomy reversal, on the other hand, is complicated. While today’s vasectomy reversals are much more effective than the reversals of the past, there’s a lot to consider before you decide if that’s the right option for you.

What makes this procedure complex? It involves microsurgery, in which the surgeon reconnects the vas deferens, the tubes that carry sperm from the testicle into the semen. This is a very delicate operation, which must be performed by a skilled surgeon, experienced in using a high-powered microscope to complete these surgeries. Here are some other things to think about before you decide on a vasectomy reversal.

  • Know whether you’re a good candidate. The good news is that no matter how much time has passed since you had a vasectomy, you can still have a vasectomy reversal. A skilled surgeon with the right expertise can successfully reverse a vasectomy that was performed 15 or 20 years ago and, in some cases, even longer. If you’ve had other groin surgeries since, though, that could reduce your chances for a successful reversal. The among of tissue removed during your vasectomy also makes a difference in how the procedure is performed. If the vasectomy was straightforward and there’s enough tissue left for a successful reversal, the procedure that’s done is called a vasovasostomy. In this procedure, the surgeon sews together the severed ends of each tube. If a vasovasostomy can’t be done with a good chance of success, the doctor will opt for a vasoepididymostomy, in which the vas deferens is attached directly to the epididymis, the small organ at the back of the testicle that holds the sperm. In rare cases, a reversal is not possible, but that doesn’t mean there’s no possibility of reproductive success. Using another microscopic procedure, the surgeon can remove sperm from the epididymis for in vitro fertilization (IVF).
  • Understand that there are some risks. In some cases, bleeding inside the scrotum can lead to a hematoma, a collection of blood that causes painful swelling. There’s also the risk of infection at the surgery site, but this is uncommon, as is persistent pain after the surgery. One thing that is not a risk of vasectomy reversal is sexual dysfunction. While this is a common concern, erectile function will not be damaged by this procedure.
  • Keep your expectations realistic. While the success rates of vasectomy reversals are good, that doesn’t mean that a couple will conceive immediately. It can take time for sperm to return to ejaculate after the surgery, and while some couples achieve pregnancy within several weeks after the procedure, it can take up to one year for others.
  • Choose a surgeon based on qualifications, not cost. Because of the nature of this surgery, it’s crucial that you find an experienced microsurgeon with good vasectomy reversal success rates. While you can sometimes find “low cost” vasectomies online, budget should not be your primary concern in such an important decision. Check your surgeon’s qualifications carefully before deciding on the person who will perform this intricate procedure.

If you decide a vasectomy reversal is right for you, depend on the experts at Center for Vasectomy Reversal. We pride ourselves on helping men improve their fertility through 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.