What is a vasectomy? And a vasectomy reversal?
In a vasectomy, the segments that allow the passage of sperm are cut and sealed to prevent pregnancy. If a man subsequently wishes to reverse the surgery, the vasectomy reversal technique is applied, rejoining the previously cut and sealed segments to restore the passage of the sperm so that pregnancy may once more be achieved by having intercourse.
How successful is vasectomy reversal?
The success rate varies and depends on a number of different factors, such as how the vasectomy was done, how long since the vasectomy, etc. Generally, the success rate is between 80% and 90% if 10 years or less since the vasectomy, thereafter decreasing.
After surgery, the time to pregnancy can vary according to each case. This will depend on the result of the sperm count – the semen analysis – which is not restored at the same rate in all cases.
Where patients have previously had an unsuccessful attempt at vasectomy reversal, having the procedure again should be considered as there are different surgical techniques.
Can sperm be frozen during vasectomy reversal?
It is possible to freeze sperm during a vasectomy reversal so, if the reversal is not successful, the couple may then try In Vitro Fertilisation with frozen sperm retrieved from the testicles (TESE).