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Vasectomy Reversal?

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Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Ash » Mon May 02, 2016 4:23 pm

Can a Vasectomy Reversal be done on animals? Well, I'm sure it can, but I'm wondering if it is a service veterinarians may offer. I can't find much information on vasectomy reversal for animals, so I'm guessing it's just not done. But still curious.
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby minervasden » Mon May 02, 2016 5:05 pm

It's reversible as it is in humans. There was a Bush Dog that had a reversal. 'Regular 'dog/cat vets probably don't have the knowledge/experience in most cases as vasectomies aren't routinely done on pets.
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby TamanduaGirl » Mon May 02, 2016 5:21 pm

Yeah not many vets even can do vasectomies or are willing to. I know one person asked their vet and they said they didn't know how and wouldn't feel confident as it's not a procedure taught in vet school.

But if you can get it done you might be able to get it undone but even less would know how to do that than to do it in the first place. Plus it might be harder the smaller the animal to undo it.
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby naja-naja » Mon May 02, 2016 6:01 pm

what animal is it for?
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Ash » Mon May 02, 2016 7:00 pm

It was a random thought I had, lol.

Fable (red fox) was neutered, but I don't know if it was a vasectomy or not. I watched the surgery and she snipped the tubes, so it could have been maybe. I always regret that I had to have him fixed. So I was just curious if it could ever be an option. It's all just wishful thinking, but it made me curious. I can look back at his vet records and see if it clarifies how he was neutered.
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Ash » Mon May 02, 2016 7:07 pm

PS, thanks for the replies, everyone. :)
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby naja-naja » Mon May 09, 2016 1:03 pm

why do you regret neutering him? has it had an effect on his personality?
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Ash » Tue May 10, 2016 3:27 am

The state made it a requirement, so I needed to if I wanted him with me. Otherwise I wouldn't have. Not because of his personality (it didn't change), but because I would have liked to have kept an intact fox and potentially breed him.

He's a beautiful fox with the fluffiest fur I've seen. He has such a wonderful personality, and he would make a great daddy fox. I saw how he acted toward Ifrit when she was a kit. He would bring her toys, treats, and food while grunting greetings at her.

I'd want to get him as health-checked as a fox could be prior to breeding him in order to ensure he'd be passing on all those desirable traits to his offspring and nothing bad.

But alas, lol. As much as I'd love to breed foxes, the market is just too over-saturated with them right now anyway (in my opinion). So in a way it may have been a good thing for Fable to have been neutered. Otherwise I likely would not have Ifrit since she would have been the "wrong" color to breed to him.
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby naja-naja » Tue May 10, 2016 7:22 pm

Ah OK. I'd maybe suggest buying a male from the same pairing as he was? and leaving him as he is. i dunno personally i woulnd't want to put him through another surgery just to breed him when there are plenty of intact animals out there.
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Ash » Wed May 11, 2016 12:12 am

No, I wouldn't do it to him. It was a hypothetical thing I was wondering just because I was sitting there one night thinking, "Maybe I could undo that neuter..." lol
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Dovemaiden » Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:05 pm

I wanted to mention that there is a major difference between neutering and vasectomy.

In neutering (castration), the testicles are removed.
Thus hormonal aggression is lessened, since the testes are a major producer of testosterone.

For a vasectomy, you are not removing the testicles, you are merely preventing the vas deferens from letting sperm reach the testicles in the scrotum, thus avoiding pregnancy.

The sperm need a lower temperature than the average body internal temperature in order to be viable.
Therefore, they are stored outside the body cavity in the scrotum when they are mature.
The lower temperature of the scrotum allows them to be fertile.

Vasectomy patients don't experience changes in the hormonal level.

Thus, when human males get a vasectomy so their partners don't get pregnant, their hormone levels aren't affected (they still wish to have sex).
But now, their sperm aren't released, they are reabsorbed by the body. There is no change in the individual's sexual drive or behavior.

I've not known a vet to do a vasectomy, although physiologically, it shouldn't be different for canines or felines than for primates.
There isn't much of a demand for it (I've worked at several vet clinics in different States over the years.)
I don't recall anyone ever asking to have one done on their pet.

The mechanics of a vasectomy involve either cutting or tying-off sperm-delivery tubules; it's fairly simple.
On humans it is outpatient surgery done in "twilight" anesthesia.

Theoretically, one should be able to reconnect the sperm delivery tubes; but it is delicate, sort of a micro-surgery because of how you have to match the ends up properly, and minimize scar tissue from inflammation for them to work properly again.

Reversal is also fairly expensive, without a guaranteed outcome of success, and not covered by insurance.

But for pet owners, the majority would not want a vasectomy for their pet, because there will be no lessening of territoriality, aggression, sexual behavior (like roaming about looking for ovulating females or humping guest's legs) unpredictability or emotionalism, etc.

Pets are neutered to ensure a significant reduction of this type of of unwanted male behaviour, which makes them better pets.

I think the distinction between the two (neuter and vasectomy) is one of the most common misunderstandings with veterinary procedures, particularly since humans get vasectomies.

The word "vasectomy" is frequently used in our culture; and because of our medical advancements, "vasectomy reversal" is almost as commonly discussed; the operation is not as easily undone as you would be led to believe, however.

But, because of the easy use of the terms, many, many people have the idea that: vasectomy= neuter.

Fortunately (for the many human males who get vasectomies) it is NOT the same thing!
You wouldn't have humans getting a vasectomy if that was the case.
Vasectomies don't remove anything; neuters (castrations) remove the testicles.

On the female end of the spectrum, I've had a couple of woman tell me they are thinking of "getting their tubes UNtied".

They've been surprised when I tell them they better check with their surgeon who did the initial procedure, because generally getting "tubes tied" is a euphemism for an ovarian hysterectomy (OVH) where ovaries and uterus are removed; or could be just a uterine removal, leaving the ovaries.

If a woman doesn't fully understand the procedure, she may have the impression that all reproductive organs are put on standby, so to speak.
That's why it is so important to ask questions prior to surgery.

In either case, "tubes tied" is a misnomer.

Fallopian tubes can't be untied (they aren't tied by the physician anyway) and the woman cannot be made fertile again, if she is missing either ovaries and/or uterus.

No Fallopian tubes are tied in this sterilization procedure---they are too small. They are about the size of a human hair.

Surgeons don't tie them; it would be too time consuming and potentially dangerous for the woman.

Problems occur on their own in woman's Fallopian tubes without a surgical intervention adding to the problem.

Sometimes Fallopian tubes become blocked or obstructed with scar tissue, from Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) or some other infection.

When that happens, an egg can't move down the tube (remember, the ovaries release eggs from above each tube's opening) and an ectopic pregnancy, which must be terminated, may result if the egg becomes fertilized and can't reach the uterus where it normally would implant, because of the blockage.

The fetus has no room to grow in a Fallopian tube, and it will rupture at some point, potentially causing death of mother and child.

Probably more info. than you really wanted; but useful to know.
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Ash » Thu Sep 28, 2017 1:35 am

Thank you for the clarity. That is all very cool and good to know. He still has his testicles, so it must have been a vasectomy. Very interesting stuff, thanks.
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Juska » Thu Sep 28, 2017 9:18 am

Dovemaiden wrote:They've been surprised when I tell them they better check with their surgeon who did the initial procedure, because generally getting "tubes tied" is a euphemism for an ovarian hysterectomy (OVH) where ovaries and uterus are removed; or could be just a uterine removal, leaving the ovaries.

Fallopian tubes can't be untied (they aren't tied by the physician anyway) and the woman cannot be made fertile again, if she is missing either ovaries and/or uterus.

No Fallopian tubes are tied in this sterilization procedure---they are too small. They are about the size of a human hair.


"The Fallopian tubes are bilateral muscular structures of paramesonephric duct origin. They are from 7 to 12 cm in length and usually less than 1 cm in diameter. The tubes or oviducts have a lumen (inside diameter) that varies considerably in diameter. It is extremely narrow, being less than 1 mm at its opening into the uterine cavity." 1 mm is pretty small, but it is bigger than a human hair, which is about 17 to 181 µm (millionths of a meter).

"The total thickness of the vas ranged from 1.5 to 2.7 mm (mean, 1.89 mm). The lumen of the vas ranged from 0.2 to 0.7 mm (mean, 0.43 mm)." So by that you can see how it is easier to perform a reattachment on a female's organs than a male.

Uterine/ovarian hysterectomy is very rarely done on humans for the sole purpose of sterilization. Usually reserved for the removal of uterine fibroids and uterine cancer patients, as removing the uterus/ovaries can cause premature death in younger women, and cause surgical menopause to occur. Not to mention a lot of different complications afterward that aren't worth the risk, when you could have a tubal ligation (tubes tied) instead. I seriously doubt a woman would have that procedure performed on her without her surgeon discussing it with her, as that's a lot more serious than the standard method.

The common tubal ligation procedure in humans is the tubes are not removed but cauterized on two ends, or a metal clip is placed on them, or sometimes a metal spring-like object is put inside them to cause scarring and blockage. The tubes themselves can grow around these methods and heal itself, leading to unexpected pregnancy. Obviously the clips and springs can cause infection and other injury, which is why it makes me a little squeamish :shock:

The reversal of the procedure is to remove the section that was clipped/scarred/burned and reattaching it to healthy tissue. Kind of like removing It can and has been done.

There is also another procedure, salpingectomy, in which the Fallopian tubes are completely removed, leaving the uterus and ovaries intact. But there is no chance for reversal or the tubes healing, because the entire length of the tubes are removed.
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Dovemaiden » Fri Sep 29, 2017 8:30 pm

Thank you, That is GREAT information to know!

I love learning these new things. I had used the human hair analogy because my gyncologist friend told me that in a rather offhand fashion; I didn't double check it since I didn't have a need to do so. She was probably playing fast and loose with the biology. I'm going to give her a hard time about that next time I see her!

Oh, I apologize if I gave the impression I believed (in humans) that hysterectomies or tubal ligations are just used for sterilization; I do know that's not the case.
Two of my friends had it done because of severe endometriosis; and I had to have a complete OVH myself because of the fibroids you mentioned. Not fun.
But, fortunately I found out about bio-identical hormone; that has been a life-saver.
The surgeon prescribed me (oral) estradiol immediately after the operation and I continued to take it for many years.
My GP questioned that prescription two years ago, and thought I should stop entirely because he said estradiol wasn't safe.
In researching the issue (because I didn't want to go through menopausal symptoms and hot flashes) I discovered how bio-identical hormone replacement therapy was safer and it has made a huge difference for me.

The ones I take are creams applied to the skin and are the ones monitored by an endocrinologist by regular blood to get the amounts right; not the over-the-counter ones you see on Amazon. Those OTC ones are in very small amounts, compared to the ones from the compounding pharmacies ordered by the endocrinologist.

The drawbacks with the prescribed ones (BHRT) are the cost (which is not covered by insurance if you have to balance all three hormones, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone; and secondly, applying them daily is sort of a pain with them being creams.
You need to apply in new areas a bit each day; it's certainly not as easy as taking a pill, but I am happy with the result.

I must say the bio-identical hormone replacement therapy has helped tremendously with depression/moodiness and, surprisingly to me, my energy level is a lot higher now.

Your thoughtful and informative reply was very helpful; I've been behind the times on the human end of things.
My OVH was about 16 years ago; one friend had hers 4 years before, the other friend 2 years later. But, as you said, they were for severe uterine/ovarian problems.

It is wonderful to hear of the advanced techniques utilizing metal clips; and the reversal options for these women.
Isn't it something when you think back even 10 years ago, (and definitely going back 20, 30, 50 years) what is now possible with our leaps in the medical field in so many areas?
And more advances are being made all the time, including repair using our own stem cells from the hip bones, abdominal area, teeth; gene replacement therapy possibilities; finding new ways to thwart cancer viruses; it's mind-boggling.

But, true story----well, stories---follow.
I personally know and spoke to the two women I referenced in the initial post who did NOT know they no longer had reproductive ability.
Both checked with their doctors after we talked.
Both were angry and grieved; I don't know if either ever filed any type of lawsuit. However, keep in mind this was in the late 1970's, early 1980's; and neither of them, I think, were cognizant enough of their rights to procure an attorney, nor were they well-off financially to afford one.

I am sure that nowadays, any surgeon (s) who acted as presumptuously as these men did in the circumstances mentioned below (not going through a full discussion with the patient about a major medical procedure and the results) would find themselves "tied-up" in extensive litigation and reparation, as well as severe public scrutiny!

In the first case, the lady I know was from Florida. She had given birth to 13 children. She had 11 surviving children because she lost 2 as infant stillbirths.
Immediately after the 13th pregnancy, the doctor talked to her about getting her "tubes tied" and she agreed, I presume without asking specifics. She said her doctor told her she was wearing out her body by having so many pregnancies so close together.
About three years later, she told me she and her husband decided they wanted more children. She was visiting us in New Jersey at the time, and I was, well, surprised as you can imagine, but hey; not my choice to make.
I told her she might not be able to do a reversal, that it was probably an OVH he had performed.
She didn't think so, but when she went back to talk to him---that is just what he had done. A complete ovarian hysterectomy.
Then he told her he assumed she knew that's what "tying her tubes" meant.

You think she would have noticed going through hot flashes and other post-menopausal symptoms?
Maybe she had them but the symptoms were mild enough she didn't question it?

The second friend who had a similar scenario. This occurred in Laramie, Wyoming, l983. She was our next-door neighbor.
She had three children. After the third, her surgeon suggested she should "have her tubes tied" so she had him perform operation.
About 9 months later, her last-born child succumbed to pneumonia. After the funeral, she told me she was going to see her doctor about having her tubes "untied" so she could have another baby.
I asked her if she was still totally intact---because I understood it was difficult to reverse, and that surgeons used the term "tubes tied" to mean a hysterectomy (I probably had that in my head because what happened to my friend in Florida).
It seems in retrospect there must have been tubal ligations being performed at that time as you mentioned, because I had heard they were hard to reverse and I remember telling her that.
Of course, doctors didn't have the more precise surgical techniques and expertise we have now; it's not hard to envision why they had trouble reversing them.
When she checked, sure enough, he'd performed a sterilization, not a tubal ligation, but still called it "tying tubes."

It is hard to believe that happening, but it did in both cases. I am perplexed why the surgeons would mislead their patients by giving them misinformation on the procedure, but, according to the women I spoke to that is what they were told.

In reading your message on the new techniques, I think it is so fascinating that the body can repair, on its own, the damage caused by the metal clips and in some cases recreate an opening for the egg to pass down to the uterus. Thank you so much for sharing that.
It appears that reproduction is the utmost importance, to the extent that nature does find a way to fix a problem and pass on those important genes.
And, that reminds me of that line in "Jurassic Park" when Jeff Goldblum asked the lead scientist who had recreated the dinosaur lines about how he (the scientist) was so sure that all the dinosaurs were female, and that they wouldn't be able to reproduce. Goldblum countered with "Nature always finds a way".
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Re: Vasectomy Reversal?

Postby Vata Raven » Sat Sep 30, 2017 1:10 pm

Ash wrote:But alas, lol. As much as I'd love to breed foxes, the market is just too over-saturated with them right now anyway (in my opinion).

You could breed a fox species that is rarer. The higher price of entry should fend off the irresponsible owners.

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