Risks and Complication of Vasectomy Reversal
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What are the risks of reversing a vasectomy?
As with any surgical procedure there are both risks and benefits. In a vasectomy reversal, the desired benefit is renewed fertility, and this procedure has a greater than 80 percent success rate.
In terms of risks associated with the procedure, they include:
- bleeding and bruising - a common side effect of surgery due to cutting of the skin and manipulation of the tissues
- swelling and pain - a common side effect of surgery, which can be managed with ice and over-the-counter analgesics
- infection at the surgical site - treatment with antibiotics will manage this
- risk for failure to re-establish fertility - this occurs less than 20 percent of the time and may be related to other factors, such as low sperm count
- sperm granuloma - a small lump that forms in the teste in response to sperm leakage during the procedure which does not need treatment unless it causes pain
- allergic reaction to anesthesia - treated with anti-histamines, remember to add the anesthetic to your list of allergies
- decline in sperm count - may be related to scarring or interruption of blood flow
- long term testicular pain - this is rare and can be treated
- testicular atrophy - a rare complication associated with disruption of the blood flow to the testes related to the surgery
- sexual difficulties - these are usually emotional, rather than physical and can be related to the new stress of trying to conceive
It is important to discuss the risks and benefits with your Urologist, physician or Fertility Specialist prior to attempting a vasectomy reversal, to ensure that you are fully informed and prepared for the procedure, physically and emotionally.