Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is vasectomy reversible?
A: Technically, yes, but with varying success. A general anesthetic is required and a skilled and experienced urologist will do the procedure. Success rates may be as high as 70% but do tend to drop off with increasing time since your vasectomy.
Q: Will I still ejaculate?
A: Yes. Only the sperm component of the seminal fluid is eliminated. The remaining 98% of seminal fluid is unchanged so that you will not likely notice any change in the volume of the ejaculate.
Q: Do I need to continue to have sperm levels checked?
A: This is usually not necessary because of the extremely low chance of a late failure as was described earlier. However, if you require ongoing reassurance, you may be able to arrange for periodic testing of the semen through your regular physician.
Q: What happens to the sperm?
A: Your testicles continue to produce sperm which move down the vas to the point at which it has been tied off. This stretches the vas enough to trigger a response by the body in which white blood cells are sent in to investigate and eventually break down the sperm. The broken down products can then be reabsorbed and used for other purposes by the body.
Q: Should I shave the area ahead of time?
A: Usually not. Wound infection studies show that the less time from the shave to the opening of the skin results in lower infection rates. Your doctor will shave the area before the operation if it is required.
Q: When can I have intercourse afterwards?
A: Try to wait at least 7-10 days to allow some healing to take place. You may have some pain with intercourse initially but this should quickly disappear if it happens at all. Men who ejaculate within the first few days after surgery are more likely to end up in the small group of failures.
Q: What about the Laser Vasectomy?
A: Currently there is no laser vasectomy and if there were it would be unlikely to provide any advantage because a small hole in the skin is still required. Many men hear “no scalpel” vasectomy and assume this means laser.
Q: Is there a charge for the procedure?
A: Alberta Health Care does cover the cost of the vasectomy operation but there are certain services that Alberta Health does not insure. At our facility we recognize the value of your time and do our utmost to see that your follow-up care does not inconvenience you unnecessarily or make you miss time from work. We charge an all inclusive fee that covers initial dose of medication, dressings, cold-pack, telephone prescriptions, etc. If necessary we also assist by, arranging laboratory testing, phoning you with your laboratory results, patient counseling, as well as numerous enhanced services until you test "clear". The uninsured services portion of the procedure is $200.00. This is payable by cash, debit or Visa/Mastercard at the time of your visit. We are unfortunately no longer in a position to be able to accept cheques.
Q: How long will my appointment take?
A: We value your time and do our utmost to run on schedule, or even ahead of schedule. Please plan on arriving 15 minutes ahead of your surgery time.
Q: What is your cancellation policy?
A: If you must cancel your surgery, please give as much notice as possible so that we may offer your spot to someone who is on our cancellation list. If you do not advise us of your inability to make it to your appointment with at least 48 hours notice, you will be billed a cancellation fee of $100.00. Failing this, you will not be given another appointment without a valid credit card number authorizing us to charge the entire uninsured fee component of $200.00 to your account.
Q: Can I drive myself to and from my appointment?
A: We recommend that you make arrangements for someone else to drive you home, particularly if your drive home is more than 15 minutes.
Q: Where do I park?
A: There is underground parking available at no charge.
Q: Can I bring my family to my appointment?
A: Our clinic is relatively small and does have stairs to reach our office. We prefer that you make arrangements for a babysitter for your children rather than to bring them along with you to our office.
Q: What is your office setup?
A: Our office is located at 4306 Richmond Road S.W. There is underground parking available at no charge, or one can park in the street. We do ask that you not bring your children with you on the day of your surgery but that you make arrangements for childcare for them. This will create a much more relaxing environment for you, your doctor and for any other men who may overlap with the time of your appointment.