Treatments & Options - Reversals Treatments & Options - Reversals

Thinking about a tubal or vasectomy reversal in order to get pregnant? Many women and men undergo reversal surgeries each year. If you choose to do so, there are important factors to consider. We answer some of your most common questions about reversals.

Can I get pregnant after tubal ligation reversal?
A successful pregnancy after tubal ligation reversal is possible, depending on the following:  

  • Your age
  • The site where your tubes were tied
  • Underlying pelvic problems such as endometriosis and fibroid tumors
  • Ovulation function
  • Lifestyle habits and weight

Am I a good candidate for tubal reversal?
If you fit the following criteria, you may be a good candidate for tubal reversal surgery:

  • You have at least one inch of tube coming out of your uterus. Your doctor may determine this by using hysterosalpingography to x-ray your uterus and tubes.
  • You have two and a half inches or more of residual tube with a normal fimbriated end to the tube.
  • You have an adequate numbers of eggs in your ovaries [determined by a simple blood test for FSH (follicle stimulating hormone)].
  • Your partner has healthy sperm.

Your doctor can give you an indication of how successful a tubal reversal might be.

Can we get pregnant after vasectomy reversal?
After a vasectomy, men have two primary options for getting a woman pregnant again:

During IVF, sperm can be surgically removed from your partner and used to fertilize your eggs.

Are we good candidates for vasectomy reversal?
Vasectomy reversal may allow your partner to produce sperm again and have children. Benefits of a vasectomy reversal over IVF include:

  • Your partner will be fertile for many years; with IVF he will only be able to conceive during that particular IVF cycle.
  • Vasectomy reversal may be more cost-effective than IVF.
  • During IVF, both you and your partner will have multiple procedures and multiple doctor visits; vasectomy reversal will require only your partner’s participation.
  • IVF can sometimes increase the chances of having a pregnancy with multiples, which may increase complications during pregnancy.

IVF may be a better option for your partner if:

  • A vasectomy reversal did not work
  • You have female factor infertility.
  • You are over age 37 and have a limited window of time in which to conceive.

Unfortunately, vasectomy reversals can fail. Sometimes a surgeon is unable to reconnect the vas deferens or normal sperm activity does not resume. However, your partner can repeat a vasectomy reversal and let the surgeon try again. Talk with your partner’s urologist to find out more about vasectomy reversal and pregnancy.