Mayo Clinic's approach
- Collaboration. A compassionate team of experts can assess your health and your partner's and help you decide on a treatment plan that best fits your needs and preferences. Sevann Helo, M.D., a urologist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and her team work closely with the Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility to provide complete and thorough care for both male and female partners.
- Expertise. The Mayo Clinic team actively assesses and incorporates the latest evidence regarding fertility to give you the best outcomes with the least unnecessary testing and delay.
- Technology. Over the years, Mayo Clinic doctors have helped thousands of people begin or expand their families. Vasectomy reversals are currently performed at Mayo Clinic's campus in Rochester, Minnesota, by a doctor trained in both traditional microscopic and robot-assisted vasectomy reversal techniques.
- One-stop care. A detailed itinerary for appointments, tests and procedures lets us make the most of your time at the clinic. We also run all tests and labs ourselves, which means tests taken in the morning can be reviewed the same afternoon.
- A personal approach. We get to know you and your concerns completely and explain your options in plain language. Long experience has shown us that understanding and considering all your issues as we develop a treatment plan together simply works better.
Expertise and rankings
- Experience. Over the years, Mayo Clinic doctors have helped thousands of people begin or expand their families.
- Nationally recognized expertise. Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, is ranked among the Best Hospitals for urology by U.S. News & World Report. Mayo Clinic reproductive endocrinologists and male fertility experts are fellowship trained and are leaders in their field. They will directly work with you to improve your chances for fertility and successful conception — whether with medication, surgery, in vitro fertilization (IVF) or another method.
- Advanced technology. At Mayo Clinic, male infertility is treated by a urologist with training in both traditional microsurgical and robot-assisted infertility techniques. Procedures performed include vasectomy reversal, varicocelectomy, microsurgical testicular sperm extraction, testicular sperm extraction, microepididymal sperm aspiration (MESA), testicular biopsy, vasography and transrectal ultrasonography with seminal vesiculography, among others.
Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., is ranked No. 1 for urology in the U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals rankings. Mayo Clinic in Phoenix/Scottsdale, Ariz., and Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla., are ranked among the Best Hospitals in the nation for urology by U.S. News & World Report. Mayo Clinic Children's Center in Rochester is ranked the No. 1 hospital in Minnesota, and the five-state region of Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin, according to U.S. News & World Report's 2022–2023 "Best Children's Hospitals" rankings.
Costs and insurance
At Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, options for vasectomy reversal include:
- Option 1: Microscopic vasectomy reversal in the operating room under anesthesia. Cost is $16,000.
- Option 2: Microscopic vasectomy reversal in the clinic using local anesthesia and light sedation (preferred option). Cost is $6,000.
- Option 3: Robot-assisted vasectomy reversal. Performed only in select cases. Cost varies depending on whether your insurance will cover any part of the procedure.
Freezing sperm (cryopreservation) at the time of the vasectomy reversal costs about $1,000. Fees for long-term storage also apply and range from $250 to $500 a year.
Which option is right for you?
In general, the decision to have the vasectomy reversal in the office or operating room will depend on cost and comfort. The procedure done in the operating room (Option 1) is more expensive, as it requires the assistance of additional personnel and an anesthesiologist. You will be asleep for the entire surgery.
The office-based procedure (Option 2) is less expensive, as it does not require the use of general anesthesia. With this approach, you will be given a medicine that will lightly sedate you (you will still be awake during the procedure), and local numbing medicine will be applied to the scrotum. The numbing medicine may sting for a few seconds. Once it has been applied, you should be comfortable through the remainder of the procedure. During the surgery, which may last two to four hours, you will lie flat and be asked to move as little as possible — something that should also factor into your decision.
The surgical procedure performed is the same with either option, including the technique and the use of the operating microscope and fine sutures. The outcomes also are similar.
Robot-assisted vasectomy reversal (Option 3) is typically performed only when the vas deferens has become blocked at the level of the inguinal canal. This most often occurs after a hernia repair, although it is rare.
Should you freeze sperm at the time of vasectomy reversal?
The decision of whether to freeze sperm at the time of vasectomy reversal is based on a few considerations. Freezing sperm requires additional upfront costs, including an estimated $1,000 for retrieval plus $250 to $500 for annual storage fees. The advantage of freezing at the time of surgery is that no additional procedures would be required if the vasectomy reversal isn't successful. The disadvantage is that freezing sperm is unnecessary in the majority of cases.
If you decide against freezing sperm at the time of your vasectomy reversal, and if your vasectomy reversal is unsuccessful, sperm may be retrieved at a later time, directly from the testicles. This requires a minimal office-based procedure. Annual storage costs of $250 to $500 still apply.
Given the overall high success rates with vasectomy reversal, the ability to retrieve sperm at a later date and similar costs with upfront versus later freezing, most couples choose not to freeze sperm at the time of surgery.
Mayo Clinic Men's Health Center
For more information on vasectomy reversal surgery at Mayo Clinic, including success rates and alternatives, visit the Mayo Clinic Men's Health Center.
Our caring team of Mayo Clinic experts can help you with your health concerns. Get started at Mayo Clinic Men's Health.
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Aug. 20, 2021