Vasectomy reversal success rates can be measured two ways:
Patency – the percentage of patients that achieve at least one million motile sperm in an ejaculated specimen within one year after surgery. Dr. Shep’s patency success rate is 98%.
Pregnancy – the percentage of vasectomy reversal patients who achieve pregnancy with no additional assistance. Dr. Shep’s patients see a pregnancy rate of roughly 65%.
These success rates vary based on the type of reversal surgery that is required. The percentages above are generally equal to or greater than the success rates offered by other high-volume centers throughout the United States.
Sometimes a patient requires a procedure called a vasoepididymostomy, which is more complicated and technically demanding than the vasovasostomy. When vasoepididymostomy is required on each side, the patency rate is 70-75%, and the natural pregnancy rate is around 40%.
In general, success rates will vary by clinic, based on a number of factors:
The experience and skill level of the surgeon.
The use of a high-power operating microscope for every surgery.
The number of years since the patient had their vasectomy (the longer the time, the more likely it is the patient will require vasoepididymostomy).
Expertise of microsurgical nurses and assistants in the operating room.
Age and fertility status of the female partner.
Sperm flow returns immediately in many patients, but can take up to a full year for some. On several occasions, Dr. Shep’s clients have achieved pregnancy in as little as 5 weeks after surgery. It is important to check sperm levels intermittently to be certain that the vasectomy reversal has been successful and to watch for any signs of delayed scarring or worsening sperm counts. Dr. Shep will schedule a semen analysis every 3-4 months for the first year after surgery to monitor progress.