Many couples experience a deep sense of satisfaction when they have completed their family unit. When this decision is made, whether after extensive discussions or that inner knowing that the time is right, couples who decide to manage family planning with permanent birth control such as vasectomy typically don’t reopen that door in the future. However, life is unpredictable. Should a couple decide that they would like more children, the idea of a vasectomy reversal shouldn’t be overlooked. This procedure provides hope for couples who may otherwise count themselves out of the future parenting game.
Vasectomy Reversal Success
Historically, vasectomy has been commonly thought of as permanent. However, many men now seek to have their initial procedure reversed in a follow-up surgery that reconnects the reproductive tract. Vasectomy reversal can be successful, but it is important to know what this means.
Technically, a vasectomy reversal is successful when sperm can be measured in the semen following surgery. Using this measurement, the technical success rate of vasectomy reversal lies in the 90th percentile. What couples are more interested in is the real-life success of vasectomy reversal – the ability that the male partner can father children naturally. In this instance, the success rate is almost always lower.
Studies indicate that the sooner a man undergoes vasectomy reversal (within a few years after vasectomy), the higher the couple’s chances of successful pregnancy. Seventy-six percent of men treated within three years of vasectomy father children. When the time between vasectomy and vasectomy reversal extends beyond a decade, the likelihood of future pregnancy sits around 30%.
Time isn’t the Only Factor
The fact that conception success rates appear relatively low for men whose vasectomy reversal is postponed for many years doesn’t mean the procedure itself is unsuccessful. Even when sperm can be found in the ejaculate, couples may struggle to conceive. This could relate to the age and general health of either partner and may also be attributed to a blockage in the epididymis, the ductwork that directs semen to the vas deferens.
Is IVF a Better Option?
The obvious goal of couples who want to have children is to accomplish a successful pregnancy. Both vasectomy reversal and IVF offer hope when fertility has been an issue. In instances of a previous vasectomy, what IVF does for the couple is extract sperm and eggs so they can be joined in a lab setting. The embryo is then implanted into the woman’s womb. The success rate of this process is approximately 40%, and multiple procedures are necessary, which translates into a bigger investment. Vasectomy reversal is similarly successful, takes less time, and incurs fewer medical costs.
Learn more about vasectomy reversal. Call our Plano office at (972) 403-5425.This entry was posted in Vasectomy. Bookmark the permalink.
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