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Specialist urologists should handle vasectomy reversal cases says 10-year study
Date:9/19/2012

Vasectomy reversals should be carried out by urology specialists with access to appropriate micro-surgical training and assisted reproductive technologies and not general urology surgeons, according to research published in the October issue of BJUI.

The findings are based on a series of surveys carried out among consultant members of the British Association of Urological Surgeons (BAUS) over a ten-year period.

"It is clear from our research that couples should not be seen by urologists with diverse interests, but by those with appropriate knowledge of all of the factors influencing the outcome of a vasectomy reversal" says co-author and consultant urologist Dr Stephen R Payne from Manchester Royal Infirmary, UK.

"Patient management after previous vasectomy is a complex process requiring detailed knowledge when it comes to the surgical techniques available and the options for maximising the chance of any subsequent pregnancy."

BAUS members were surveyed in 2001, 2005 and 2010, with a total of 835 replies to the three questionnaires and an overall response rate of 47%.

Every year some 20,000 vasectomies are performed in the UK. During the procedure, the vas deferens, the ducts that carry sperm from the testicles to the seminal vesicles, are cut and tied to interrupt sperm flow.

About 6% of men subsequently ask for the procedure to be reversed so that their partner can get pregnant. Various options are available to these couples, including vaso-vasostomy, a surgical reversal procedure where the ends of the vasa are identified and joined back together again. The other options are surgical retrieval of sperm, which then need to be used together with IVF, and the use of donated sperm or adoption.

The overall findings of the surveys showed that:

  • more than 80% of respondents performed vaso-vasostomy, but about three-quarters were only doing 15 or less procedures a year
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Contact: Annette Whibley
annette.wizard@gmail.com
Wiley
Source:Eurekalert

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