Having children after a vasectomy: How we can help

12th August 2013 in Treatments

This information was correct at the time of publishing. It may not reflect our current practices, prices or regulations.

If you’ve had a vasectomy but would now like to have children, it is often possible to reverse the vasectomy to help you conceive a child. But what if the reconnection of the tubes which carry the sperm, as performed in a vasectomy reversal, doesn’t work?

At Manchester Fertility our Consultant Urologist, Steve Payne, specialises in male infertility issues and is our leading expert in helping men to have children following vasectomies or failed vasectomy reversal.

You will first need to see our Consultant Urologist for evaluation and investigation, so he can determine the best technique and treatment to use for you, which will give the highest chance of success. 

This may involve a technique called Surgical Sperm Retreival (SSR) of which there are a number of different types. The most common used for cases involving vasectomy are:

Percutaneous Epididymal Sperm Aspiration (PESA): PESA is recommended when there is a blockage in the sperm transport tubes. It is done by inserting a fine needle through the scrotum into the epididymis. A sample is aspirated from the epididymis, which is then sent to the laboratory to see if it contains motile sperm. PESA can be performed without an anaesthetic. Although it is uncomfortable, most men can tolerate the operation. However, we recommend a  sedation  as occasionally no sperm is retrieved using PESA and so it may be necessary to proceed to TESE, which is when small biopsies are taken from the testes to retrieve sperm.

Micro-epididymal Sperm Aspiration (MESA): MESA is an open procedure that requires general anaesthetic. This is usually done at the same time as a reversal of vasectomy. Instead of using a needle, a cut is made through the scrotum and into the epididymis. Any fluid found in the area is drained and sent to our laboratory for analysis.

At your consultation we will explain to you which method may be most appropriate for your personal diagnosis. You will also need to complete the consent forms in order to freeze and store any sperm retrieved, and to use the sperm in infertility treatment. Also, you will need testing for HIV, hepatitis B and C. This is a requirement by the HFEA before your sperm can be placed into storage.

To find out more about having children after vasectomy, please contact our Patient Advisors on 0161 300 2737 or contact us here and one of our team will get in touch.

Last updated: 20th January 2020