Vasectomy reversal is increasingly popular throughout the USA however, first, what is a vasectomy? A vasectomy is an operation to cut the tubes that carry sperm from the testicles to the penis creating a complete block, so sperm cannot flow out of the body. This leaves you unable to father any children. The cut ends of these tubes are sealed by clipping, stitches, or cauterization. A vasectomy, therefore, does not stop the production of sperm, it merely prevents them from exiting the body.
A vasectomy should be considered a permanent solution to birth control, however, for some men life can change dramatically either through a divorce, the death of their partner or child, or other unexpected changes in circumstances, and they wish to reverse the operation. A vasectomy reversal can facilitate the creation of a new family even if it’s been more than twenty years since you had the vasectomy.
What Happens During the Operation?
The vasectomy reversal operation is usually performed under general anesthetic which means you will not be conscious during the procedure. It can take between 1 to 4 hours, depending on the complexity of the operation and which type of vasectomy reversal procedure is used.
An access cut is made into each side of the scrotum or sometimes just one cut in the center and then the cut ends of the tubes are gently pulled through the cuts for maximum visibility during the operation. The surgeon will then trim the ends to remove any damaged tissue and carefully squirt fluid into the end of the tube that leads to the penis.
The surgeon repairs the cuts by finely sewing the ends of the inner tubes together with one row of dissolvable stitches, before sewing the outside also with dissolvable stitches, so the tubes are completely sealed. They’re then placed back inside the scrotum and the small access cuts are joined together using either fine stitches or surgical clips.
Will My Vasectomy Reversal Work?
The more recent your vasectomy the better your chances are of success. Studies show that if you have your vasectomy reversed within ten years, the success rate is approximately 55%. If your vasectomy was performed more than ten years ago then the success rate falls to about 25%. Generally, as time goes on, the rate of success decreases. However, there are several reasons why your vasectomy reversal may not work, aside from the length of time it’s been since the original operation:
- Blockage forming – a blockage can form after the operation due to sluggish sperm building up in the narrow tubes at the site of the join, or sometimes further back towards the testicles.
- Anti-sperm antibodies – these can sometimes develop after the vasectomy and are formed if sperm leaks into the surrounding tissue and the body perceives the sperm as alien cells and tries to attack them.
- Scar tissue – this can sometimes build up at the site of the vasectomy reversal and cause a blockage making it difficult for the sperm to get out.
It’s not all doom and gloom, however, as some men who have their vasectomy reversal more than twenty years after the vasectomy achieve success and are able to give normal sperm samples. This is due to the absence of the above situations occurring and the skill of the surgeon who does the reversal.
Should you be interested in receiving treatment from a leading doctor who specializes in vasectomy reversal, please check out Dr. Harry Fisch´s webpage or call his New York clinic directly on (212) 879-0800.