Does Insurance Cover Vasectomy Reversals?

Men who have undergone a vasectomy may, at some point in the future, decide to have the procedure reversed. Although advances in surgical techniques and medical science have made vasectomy reversal possible, this procedure involves delicate microsurgery that is complex and requires the use of general anesthesia. Such aspects lead to significant vasectomy reversal costs, which range anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000.

Most insurance plans will not cover these costs, so the financial burden will likely be shifted to the person undergoing the procedure.

Alternatives to Vasectomy Reversal

The out-of-pocket costs associated with a vasectomy reversal may prompt the investigation of other conception methods. Assisted reproductive technologies (ART) tend to be more expensive than vasectomy reversals. Such approaches, which include in vitro fertilization, have an overall success rate of about 30 percent. In comparison, vasectomy reversal success rates range from 40 to 75 percent. (See Alternatives to a vasectomy reversal for more information.)

Making a Decision

Before choosing between vasectomy reversal and ART, check with your insurance company to find out what costs, if any, are covered. Some companies may offer discounts for using doctors that are in the insurance plan's network, or cover the costs associated with blood work or other services needed to have the reversal.

Reviewed December 4, 2012, by Larry Lipshultz, MD - Urologist

References:

Asch, A., & Marmor, R. (2008). From birth to death and bench to clinic: The Hastings Center bioethics briefing book for journalists, policymakers, and campaigns. Assisted reproduction. Chpt. 2. (pp 5-10). Garrison, NY: The Hastings Center.

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