Vasectomy is a male sterilization process. The sperms are carried from the testicles via the epididymis, and then through the vas deferens before being released into the urinary system. Vasectomy is a surgical procedure which involves cutting and tying of the vas deferens, thereby stopping the flow of sperms.
Vasectomy Reversal is a microsurgery. During the surgery, the vas deferens that were cut and tied together, are opened up, thereby reconnecting the tubes. This is called a Vasovasostomy procedure. There may be a possibility that the tubes are completely blocked and a Vasovasostomy does not regain the flow of the sperms. In cases, where there is a blockage in the epididymis, a microsurgery is performed to remove the blockage. This is called a Vasoepididymostomy procedure. Vasoepididymostomy and Vasovasostomy are terms generally used for a Vasectomy Reversal surgical procedure, depending on the site of reconnection, or blockage.
Why a vasectomy reversal surgical procedure is performed?
A Vasectomy Reversal procedure is performed to reverse the male sterility procedure ‘vasectomy’ performed earlier. This procedure helps in regaining one’s sterility.
How a vasectomy reversal surgical procedure is performed?
The Vasectomy Reversal surgical procedure is performed as:
- The surgical area is cleaned using an antiseptic
- The vas fluid is then removed and examined, under the microscope. If the fluid is clear, non-opaque, and contains completely formed, healthy sperms then, the fluid is considered to be good and the separated ends of the vas deferens are reconnected
- A highly powered surgical microscope is used for the surgery, magnifying the site and thereby allowing precision
- In almost 30% of the cases, the vas fluid may be opaque and may not show the presence of sperms. This indicates a blockage at the vasectomy site
- A Vasoepididymostomy procedure is then performed. This surgery is more complex than a Vasovasostomy. In this procedure, vas deferens is connected directly to the epididymal tubule in the epididymis, to bypass the blockage
The surgery is performed by a general surgeon
. A Vasovasostomy procedure takes about 2-3 hours. However, if Vasoepididymostomy procedure needs to be performed then, it takes about 4 hours.
Preparations needed before a vasectomy reversal surgical procedure
Risks and complications after vasectomy reversal surgical procedure
- The physician may evaluate the individual’s medical history to gain a comprehensive knowledge of the overall health status of the patient including information related to the medications that are being currently taken
- Some medications increase a person’s chances of bleeding and it may be recommended to discontinue them for a period of time, before the procedure is performed
- Blood tests may be performed to determine if there is a bleeding tendency or any other medical conditions that prevents the person from undergoing the procedure
- Normally, local anaesthesia is not used however, do inform the physician, if you are allergic to any local anaesthetics, lidocaine, etc.
- Avoid application of any deodorant or topical medicines on the area, prior to the procedure
- It is advisable to quit smoking and the use of any nicotine based products, for a while, before the surgery
- Consumption of alcoholic drinks must also be avoided for a period of time, as instructed
- The patient must avoid eating or drinking at least 8 hours prior to the surgical procedure, depending on when the procedure is arranged
- For persons suffering from diabetes, it is important that the blood sugar stays within the normal range if not their diabetologist may have to control blood sugar by recommending insulin or a combination of oral medicines
There is a very small margin of risks and complications involved with this procedure. Post vasectomy reversal, the following complications may arise:
Post-operative care needed after a vasectomy reversal surgical procedure
At home, the following post-operative care is recommended after a vasectomy reversal procedure:
- Avoid bathing, 24-48 hours after the procedure
- Ice bags should be applied for 20 minutes, every hour, for the next 6-8 hours
- Avoid strenuous work for the next 2-3 days
- Regularly take the pain-killers and antibiotics, prescribed by the physician