Sometimes You Just Need to Talk
When couples need to talk, fertility issues are often delicate subject matter. But honestly, a vasectomy reversal is one subject you should discuss with your partner. After all, there is a lot riding on your decision to go ahead with a reversal. While there is no single right way to have a conversation with your partner, honesty is always the best place to begin. As with any major life decision, a vasectomy reversal is not something to take lightly. The best course of action is always to seek expert advice and ask questions about anything you do not know or understand. You should also make sure you are both on the same page, and you both have a good understanding of the process.
The Odds Are Good for Men Seeking a Vasectomy Reversal
A vasectomy reversal does not automatically guarantee a positive outcome. Successful vasectomy reversals are pretty high, though. As many as 75% of men that undergo a reversal may be able to father a child. A lot depends on the skill of the surgeon, as well as the amount of time that has passed since the initial vasectomy took place. An experienced surgeon can boost your chances of a successful outcome. In a vasectomy reversal, the surgeon will seek to successfully reconnect the tiny tubes, known as the vas deferens, that carry sperm. Even if the ends have been cut, tied and or burned, they can usually be reunited.
The surgeon will likely take a small test sample from the vas deferens to determine if sperm is present. Your doctor will also want to see if the fluid is clear or cloudy. If there are no sperm present, or if the fluid is cloudy rather than clear, the doctor may have to remove any blockage in a procedure known as a vasoepididymostomy (VE). At some point, the doctor is probably also going to check for sperm antibodies that can lower their effectiveness in fathering a child.
Once the vasectomy has been reversed completely, the doctor will likely want to continue to monitor sperm production as well as sperm motility (how well sperm swim and move). If the sperm levels are normal and they are sufficiently active, but pregnancy still has not occurred after one to two years, the doctor may advise repeating the procedure, further testing for the female partner, or possibly even in-vitro fertilization.
The majority of couples take around a year to become pregnant after a vasectomy reversal. Before you undergo any surgery, you should always discuss your options, your health, any risk factors you may have, and your overall odds of conception. You should also make sure to keep the lines of communication open and your relationship strong, as it can be an emotional process.
To learn more about a vasectomy reversal in the Phoenix area, visit Desiderio Avila, Jr., MD, a specialist in men’s health. If you, or a loved one have questions about men’s health, please contact Dr. Avila and Ironwood Urology at (480) 961-2323 or request an appointment online today.