Vasectomy should be considered permanent and irreversible.
Most vasectomies can be reversed by removing the blocked section and reconnecting the healthy vas ends, but it’s expensive (over $6000) and not always successful. Getting sperm flowing again isn’t the problem, but for some unknown reason their ability to fertilize diminishes with time elapsed. Reversal within the first three years has about a 70% chance of successful pregnancy. By ten years out, this drops to a 30% pregnancy rate, so vasectomy reversal is not to be relied on. This is why you should be positive you never wish to have any more children before you get a vasectomy.
The following groups are at higher risk of regretting their vasectomy later:
- Under 30
- Never had children
- Recently separated, divorced or in an unstable relationship.
Those with a newborn should consider postponing vasectomy until the baby is over 6 months old, since earlier is when the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS or crib death) is greatest, about 1 per 2000 births.
Sperm Cryopreservation (a.k.a. pre-vasectomy sperm banking) is “insurance” every man should consider.
It is not a guarantee of future fertility but it may be a good idea if you ever want another child later (and a small waste of money if you don’t). This service is provided at Olive Fertility Centre in Vancouver Phone: 604-559-9950, or at Victoria Fertility Centre in Victoria Phone 250-704-0024. $550 is the cost of processing the sample and storing it for the first two years, after which storage can be renewed as you wish. One specimen usually suffices. That usually yields enough semen for 8 to 12 attempts at artificial insemination (AI), or, if AI doesn’t work in the first few tries, in-vitro fertilization (IVF).