• May 8, 2024
  • Dr Luke Wee

Last updated on May 15, 2024

If you’re contemplating the possibility of expanding your family after undergoing a vasectomy, you might be considering a vasectomy reversal. While we at The Cooper Clinic specialise in vasectomies and do not offer reversal procedures, we understand the importance of providing comprehensive information to support all aspects of men’s reproductive health decisions.

In this blog post, we aim to equip you with everything you need to know about a vasectomy reversal in New Zealand. Read on to find out all the information you’ll need.

Understanding Vasectomy Reversal

A vasectomy reversal is a microsurgical procedure intended to restore fertility by reconnecting the vas deferens – the tubes severed during a vasectomy. This intricate operation demands a high level of surgical expertise, as it involves the meticulous rejoining of these tiny tubes to allow sperm to flow once again into the semen.

What is a vasectomy reversal

Vasectomy reversal in New Zealand involves microsurgery to reconnect the vas deferens.

Reasons for Considering a Reversal

Men consider vasectomy reversals for various personal and familial reasons. Some of the most common motivations include the desire for more children, significant changes in life circumstances, entering into a new relationship where children are desired, or seeking solace in the possibility of parenthood after the loss of a child.

Is a vasectomy reversal right for me

Vasectomy reversal in New Zealand is a consideration for those wishing to have children again, despite having undergone a vasectomy.

What is the procedure for a vasectomy reversal in NZ?

Preparation

Before your procedure, you’ll receive comprehensive instructions to ensure you’re fully prepared. Recommendations typically include avoiding certain medications and alcohol, taking a warm shower on the day and wearing supportive underwear. Pre-procedural personal grooming and having an ice pack ready for post-operative care are also advised.

The Procedure

A vasectomy reversal is performed as an outpatient service, meaning you can return home the same day. The procedure begins with the administration of a local anaesthetic to numb the scrotal area, ensuring a pain-free experience. For those who prefer, a sedative can be administered to help with relaxation during the surgery.

Surgeons then make small incisions in the scrotum to access the vas deferens, the tubes that were severed during your post-vasectomy period. Using an operating microscope for enhanced precision, the surgeon then reconnects the ends of the vas deferens with very fine sutures.

Recovery and Aftercare

Post-operative care is crucial for a successful recovery. You’ll be advised to use ice packs to reduce swelling and take prescribed pain relief if necessary. A gradual return to work and daily activities, avoiding strenuous exertions, is essential for optimal healing.

Why do men choose to have a vasectomy reversal operation

Vasectomy reversal in New Zealand has varying success rates, influenced by the time elapsed since the original procedure.

What are the potential complications or risks of a reversal?

As with any surgery, there are risks involved:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Scarring
  • Chronic pain
  • Sperm leakage
  • Failure to restore fertility

Success Rates and Considerations

  • Success Factors: The chances of pregnancy after a reversal depend on factors like the time since your vasectomy, your partner’s age and the surgeon’s skill.
  • Alternatives: In vitro fertilisation (IVF) with sperm retrieval might be an option in some cases, offering potentially higher success rates.

How to book a vasectomy appointment

Frequently Asked Questions

How risky is a vasectomy reversal?

Vasectomy reversals are largely considered to be safe procedures, yet as with any form of surgery, they carry certain risks. These can include the potential for infection, instances of bleeding and the possibility of enduring chronic pain. The likelihood of experiencing complications is considerably reduced when the surgery is performed by a surgeon with extensive experience.

Are vasectomies 100% reversible?

The reversibility of vasectomies is not guaranteed to be 100%. The chance of success for a reversal is influenced by various factors, such as the duration elapsed since the original vasectomy, the technique employed in the initial surgery and the proficiency of the surgeon performing the reversal. Generally, the longer the period since the original vasectomy, the less likely a successful reversal becomes.

How successful is a vasectomy reversal?

The success rate of vasectomy reversals is variable. Typically, the likelihood of a successful pregnancy following a reversal is greater if the procedure occurs within a decade of the original vasectomy. Success rates can fluctuate between 50% to 90%, influenced by different determinants such as sperm count and the patient’s overall health.

How long do I need to take off work after a vasectomy reversal?

Post-reversal, the majority of men can resume non-strenuous work duties within a week. However, for those engaged in jobs demanding physical exertion or heavy lifting, a longer recuperation period of 2 to 4 weeks may be necessary to facilitate proper healing.

Is a vasectomy reversal performed with a general anaesthetic?

Vasectomy reversals do not require a general anaesthetic. Instead, the procedure is carried out using a local anaesthetic to numb the scrotal region, thereby minimising discomfort and allowing for a quicker recovery post-surgery. This approach helps reduce the risks associated with general anaesthesia.

How long after a vasectomy reversal can I have sex?

Following a vasectomy reversal, it is generally advised to wait for approximately 2 to 6 weeks before resuming sexual activities. This waiting period allows for the surgical sites to adequately heal and reduces the risk of complications. A semen analysis may be recommended after a few months to evaluate the presence of sperm, indicating the procedure’s success in restoring fertility and the potential for conceiving further children.

Dr Luke Wee

About The Author

Dr Luke Wee

Meet Luke, our very own vasman. NZ men benefit from his hands-on experience in performing nearly 3,000 vasectomies! Luke has a special interest in men’s health and vasectomy procedures. He’s a Fellow of the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners, a member of the Association of Surgeons in Primary Care and an international vasectomy peer group. Luke keeps his thumb on the pulse and consistently updates his skills and knowledge by attending national and international conferences.

Ask Us a Question

Have a query about vasectomies or family planning? Our dedicated team is here to help! Drop us a line with any questions or concerns you may have regarding the procedure, recovery, or any other aspect of vasectomy. We’re committed to providing informative and personalised answers to support your decision-making process.

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