Are vasectomies reversible? 7 Common Questions (And Answers) About Vasectomy Reversal

You thought you didn’t have any more kids, but now you’ve changed your mind after getting that vasectomy. You probably think it’s too late to be a dad again since vasectomies are considered a permanent form of birth control, but you might be lucky.

Chris Deibert, MD, is the only male fertility fellow urologist in the state of Nebraska. His practice focuses primarily on male fertility and microscopic surgical repairs, including vasectomy reversal, a procedure that restores fertility. Below, he outlines seven common questions patients have about vasectomy reversal.

1. When are vasectomies medically necessary?

Vasectomies are never considered medically necessary, but they can be a great option for men who are no longer having children, and they are the only permanent form of male contraception.

2. Are vasectomies reversible?

Vasectomies are intended for permanent sterilization but are reversible in most men. If you previously had a vasectomy but are now considering having another child, a vasectomy reversal could restore your natural ability to conceive.

3. Can vasectomies be reversed naturally?

A vasectomy is one of the most effective forms of birth control, with an effectiveness rate of 99.85%. Once released, it is extremely rare for the procedure to fail or reverse naturally. In fact, the risk of failure is less than 1 in 2,000 (less than 0.05%), while other contraceptives such as the pill and patch have a failure rate of 0.2%. Surgery is usually the only way to reverse a vasectomy.

4. What is a vasectomy reversal?

A vasectomy reversal is a three-hour operation that involves reconnecting the previously cut vas deferens, called the vas deferens. During surgery, a urologist will remove any scar tissue left over from your previous vasectomy and carefully reconstruct the connection under a microscope.

5. When can you reverse a vasectomy?

Vasectomy reversals tend to be more successful if you’ve recently had your vasectomy. The surgery is less likely to be successful if it has been a long time since your vasectomy.

6. How long will it take my partner to conceive after vasectomy reversal?

In general, it can take up to a year for your sperm to become abundant to result in pregnancy, but it can also take as little as a few months.

7. What if my doctor determines that a vasectomy reversal is not right for me?

If your doctor determines that vasectomy reversal is not right for you, there is still hope. An alternative is in vitro fertilization or IVF. During IVF, doctors use a needle to collect sperm directly from the testicles and then fertilize your partner’s eggs.

For more information or to make an appointment, call 800,922,0000.

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