• June 10, 2024
  • Dr Luke Wee

Last updated on June 13, 2024

Vasectomy is a highly effective permanent form of birth control for men. It involves cutting or blocking the vas deferens, the tubes that carry sperm from the testicles to the urethra. While incredibly successful, some men and their partners might wonder, “what are the chances of getting pregnant after a vasectomy?”. In this article, The Cooper Clinic (where we perform no scalpel vasectomy procedures) explores the chances of getting your partner pregnant after a vasectomy, what factors influence those chances, and the importance of post-vasectomy testing.

Success Rates and Pregnancy Odds

Vasectomy offers nearly 100% birth control with a less than 1 in 1,000 pregnancy chance in the first year. This rises slightly to 2-10 in 1,000 after five years. A 2004 study showed that roughly 9.4 pregnancies per 1000 vasectomies. So while it is a very effective form of birth control, it isn’t foolproof. It’s also important to remember that vasectomies aren’t immediately effective. Sperm remains stored in the vas deferens for a few weeks or months after surgery. Doctors recommend using alternative birth control for at least three months after a vasectomy procedure to prevent pregnancy, or until semen analysis confirms the absence of sperm (sperm-free ejaculate).

Reasons for Pregnancy After Vasectomy

Although rare, pregnancies can occur after a vasectomy. Here are some reasons why:

  • Recanalisation

    This refers to the reconnection of the blocked vas deferens. While uncommon, it can happen over time.

  • Early sexual activity

    Resuming sexual activity too soon after surgery allows residual sperm present in the vas deferens to travel and potentially cause pregnancy.

  • Surgical error

    Though uncommon, technical issues during the procedure can lead to some sperm bypassing the blockage.

What are Vasectomy Reversals and Can it Occur Naturally?

A vasectomy reversal is a surgical procedure that aims to undo a vasectomy and restore fertility. By reconnecting the previously cut vas deferens tubes, sperm can once again travel and mix with semen for ejaculation. This microsurgical procedure is delicate and success rates depend on various factors.
Recanalisation is a very rare occurance when scar tissue effectively reconnects your tubes. It’s a natural process and effectively leads to a reversal of the sterility and therefore the vasectomy. If you’re considering reversing your vasectomy, consulting a urologist is the best course of action to discuss the procedure and your individual circumstances.

Natural Vasectomy Reversal | Pregnancy Prevention | Restore Fertility | Vasectomy Clinic | Cooper Clinic New Zealand

A natural vasectomy reversal cannot occur. In order to restore fertility, you would need a surgical procedure to reconnect the vas deferens.

Minimising the Risk of Pregnancy

Following your doctor’s post-operative instructions is crucial for minimising the risk of pregnancy after a vasectomy. This includes:

  • Using alternative contraception

    Continue using another form of birth control for at least 3 months after the procedure to prevent pregnancy, or until semen analysis confirms the absence of sperm.

  • Post-vasectomy semen analysis

    This test analyses semen samples to ensure no sperm are present. It’s typically conducted around 12 weeks after surgery.

  • Regular check-ups

    Schedule regular check-ups with your doctor to monitor your health and address any concerns.

Why Choose The Cooper Clinic for Your Vasectomy in New Zealand?

The Cooper Clinic prioritises your comfort, privacy, and successful outcome. Here’s what sets us apart:

  • Friday Vasectomy Clinic

    We dedicate Fridays solely to vasectomy procedures, maximising your recovery time over the weekend and minimising work disruption.

  • Single-Visit Convenience

    Our streamlined system combines the initial consultation and the vasectomy itself into one efficient appointment.

  • Gold Standard Testing

    We utilise advanced technology and the most reliable testing methods to ensure accurate procedures and sperm count analysis.

  • Discretion and Privacy

    Your privacy is paramount. All consultations are confidential, and no GP referral is necessary. Our clinics are designed for maximum privacy and comfort.

  • Transparent and Affordable Pricing

    We believe in providing high-quality care at a reasonable cost. Our vasectomy pricing structure is clear and upfront.

Interested in Getting a Vasectomy or Finding Out More About this Procedure?

Vasectomy is a safe and highly effective permanent form of birth control. While the chances of pregnancy after a vasectomy are very low, understanding the factors involved and following post-operative instructions are crucial for optimal results. The Cooper Clinic, with its commitment to patient comfort, privacy, and advanced technology, can guide you through the non scalpel vasectomy process with confidence. Contact us today for a consultation.

Learn more here

To learn more or to request an appointment, you can use the enquiry form on our contact us page.
Appointments can also be made here:
Toll Free Number
0800 884 408


How can pregnancy occur after a vasectomy?

Pregnancy after a vasectomy is rare, but it can happen for a few reasons. The most common are:

  • Recanalisation: The blocked tubes (vas deferens) reconnecting over time.
  • Residual sperm: Sperm stored in the vas deferens after surgery travelling and fertilising an egg.
  • Surgical error: An uncommon technical issue during the procedure allowing some sperm to bypass the blockage.

What is the cost of a vasectomy in New Zealand?

The Cooper Clinic offers no scalpel vasectomy procedures at $695 with local anaesthetic. IV sedation incurs an additional $400. You might be eligible for free vasectomy coverage under specific insurance plans (terms and conditions apply). See our full pricing structure here.

How soon can I have sex after a vasectomy?

Your doctor will provide specific instructions, but typically, you’ll need to wait at least a week before resuming sexual activity.

Will I still produce sperm after a vasectomy?

Yes, you will still produce sperm after a vasectomy. The testicles continue to produce sperm as usual according to your normal sperm count. However, the vasectomy blocks the tubes (vas deferens) that normally carry sperm to the semen. So, the sperm produced cannot travel and mix with the semen for ejaculation. This will need to be confirmed in a semen analysis.

Will I still ejaculate after a vasectomy?

Yes, you will still ejaculate after a vasectomy. However, the semen will not contain sperm.

What are the potential side effects of a vasectomy?

While uncommon, potential side effects can include swelling, bruising, and discomfort in the scrotal area. These usually subside within a few days.

Is a vasectomy reversible?

Vasectomy reversal procedures exist, but they are complex, and success rates vary. Discussing these options with a qualified urologist is recommended.

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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