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Vasectomy Reversal

About vasectomy reversal surgery

For a variety of personal reasons, over 500,000 men in the United States receive vasectomies each year. However, due to changes in environment and priorities, as well as discomfort resulting from vasectomy surgery, many of these men later consider a reversal of the sterilization process. In recent years, the number of men receiving reversal vasectomies has increased from 5 percent to between 6 and 12 percent each year.

Vasectomy reversal is a relatively brief outpatient surgery, and the increased availability of vasectomy reversal doctors allows potential patients to compare pricing and procedures before deciding what best suits their needs.

Vasectomy Reversal Surgery

The purpose of a vasectomy reversal is to reopen the vas deferens to restore the flow of sperm. There is a correlation between the recentness of the vasectomy and the success of the reversal. There are two major forms of reversal vasectomy:

  1. Vasoepididymostomy. In some cases, no vas fluid is found during the procedure, which indicates a blockage in the epididymis, caused by inflammation or scarring. In a vasoepididymostomy surgery, the vas deferens is stitched directly to the epididymis to bypass the blockage. Sperm flow is generally monitored for up to a year after surgery, and the surgery is considered a failure if sperm does not return.
  2. Vasovasostomy. If there are no complications from the initial vasectomy and the sperm is healthy, a standard surgery involving the reconnection of the separated ends of the vas deferens is performed. Like a vasoepididymostomy, this is an outpatient surgery that requires further monitoring to ensure that normal sperm flow returns.

Cost of Vasectomy Reversal

The price of a reversal vasectomy varies dramatically depending on the chosen physician, the type of procedure and the costs of supplies used for the surgery. The total vasectomy reversal cost generally consists of fees for three essential services: the actual vasectomy reversal surgery performed by the physician, the supply of anesthesia and the cost of the facility where the surgery is performed. The surgical fee typically ranges from $2,500 to $10,000, and the additional costs are typically between $5,000 and $10,000. In its entirety, the surgery ranges between $5,000 and $20,000, but the average cost is between $8,000 and $10,000 for a safe, high-quality procedure. Costs can be reduced by having the procedure in lower cost outpatient treatment centers and contacting your insurance company for information on possible coverage.

Making the Decision

Although the vasectomy reversal success rate is approximately 95 percent, sperm flow does not always return. With this in mind, it is necessary to consider all of the risks before proceeding with the treatment. Weigh cost and potential side effects against the necessity for the reversal. Most importantly, remember that many physicians offer free consultations to help potential patients make the best choices and guide them through a process that families may find intimidating. Getting a reversal vasectomy is not a decision that has to be made alone.

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