Outcome of a Vasectomy Reversal
Dr. Conners explains how the studies compare for best reversal vasectomy success rates
The outcome results of vasectomy reversal are reported as two percentages.
- The first is patency rate; that means the percentage of men who have the return of sperm in the ejaculate after reversal. This means that the operation was technically successful.
- The second statistic reported is the pregnancy rate. The pregnancy rate is always lower than the patency rate because many more factors play a role in getting pregnant other that the return of sperm in the ejaculate.
The results of microsurgical vasovasostomy from the Vasovasostomy Study Group data are > 90% patency if sperm were present in the vasal fluid at the time of surgery and pregnancy rates up to 76%. This is the study quoted by most surgeons when asked about results of vasectomy reversal. Dr. Conners’s personal results to date is an over 98% patency outcome rate (sperm restored to the ejaculate) if sperm were present in the vas fluid at surgery.
Data collected by the Vasovasostomy Study Group (the largest multicenter study of vasectomy reversals, published in 1991) showed a distinct increase in success rates when the surgery was performed using an operating microscope by a skilled micro surgeon. The American Urological Association offers several fellowships (1-2 years of specialized intensive training) in male infertility and microsurgery. While many doctors will attempt this surgery, most have no formal training as micro surgeons. It is incumbent upon the prospective patient to make sure that the surgeon he chooses is a trained micro surgeon and infertility expert who practices microsurgery on a consistent basis.
Even though a failed vasectomy reversal can be successfully repaired, the first attempt is the best chance.
Factors To Consider
Vasectomy Reversal is not guaranteed. While Dr. Conners has a very high success rate, we cannot guarantee pregnancy. Even if sperm is found in the semen after your reversal, your body may have developed sperm antibodies. Sperm antibodies can prevent you from fathering a child.