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How to Test Your Sperm After a Vasectomy

Welcome to our guide on post vasectomy sperm testing – a crucial step to ensure the success of your vasectomy procedure and provide ultimate peace of mind. In this blog, we’ll delve into the significance of sperm testing, debunk common misconceptions about vasectomies, and introduce you to a convenient and accurate at-home testing option – the ExSeed home sperm test.

 

Understanding Vasectomy and Its Success Rate

A vasectomy is a highly effective and permanent form of male contraception. During the procedure, the vas deferens, the tubes that carry sperm from the testicles to the urethra, are cut or blocked to prevent sperm from reaching semen. This simple yet effective technique makes vasectomy one of the most reliable birth control methods available for men.

The success rate of vasectomy is remarkably high, with only a minuscule chance of failure. However, even with a low probability, it’s crucial to verify the success of the procedure to ensure complete peace of mind.

 

The Importance of Post Vasectomy Sperm Testing

Post vasectomy sperm testing is an integral part of the vasectomy process and is essential for every man who undergoes the procedure. Despite its high success rate, there may be rare instances where the vasectomy doesn’t immediately render a man sterile. The presence of viable sperm post-vasectomy can occur due to residual sperm in the reproductive system.

It’s a common misconception that once the vasectomy is done, there’s no need to worry about contraception. However, viable sperm can persist in the system for a period after the procedure, and unprotected sexual activity should not resume until sterility is confirmed through a sperm test.

The post vasectomy test verifies the effectiveness of the procedure and ensures that you are no longer capable of causing a pregnancy. This test plays a crucial role in preventing any unexpected surprises and avoiding potential complications.

 

Benefits of Regular Post Vasectomy Sperm Testing

One of the primary benefits of a post vasectomy test is the assurance it brings. Knowing that your vasectomy was successful and you are sterile can provide a profound sense of relief and confidence in your family planning decisions and relationships.

This assurance allows them to resume sexual activity without the constant worry of unintended pregnancy. For couples, it can foster a more intimate and relaxed relationship, knowing that the success of contraception is no longer an ongoing concern.

Additionally, regular post vasectomy sperm testing protects you from potential emotional and financial stress that could arise from an incomplete vasectomy. Early detection of any issues allows for timely intervention and corrective measures, ensuring you can confidently plan your family’s future.

 

The Available Post-Vasectomy Sperm Tests

Whether you choose to undergo sperm testing with your healthcare provider or opt for the convenience of an at-home solution like the ExSeed home sperm test, remember that testing of some sort is vital for safeguarding your future. You may receive a semen testing kit after your vasectomy procedure which you use to send a sample in the post 12 weeks after your procedure. If this is not offered, or you’d like to find out if your vasectomy has been successful quicker than 12 weeks and without sending off your sperm sample, the ExSeed test could be for you.

With the accuracy of a lab test and with the ease of conducting it at home, you can confidently take control of your reproductive health, ensuring a worry-free life for you and your partner. Within the ExSeed app, all you’d need to do if tick the box shown below that says that you’ve had a vasectomy, which will prompt the algorithm and medical team to analyze your result appropriately.

 

ExSeed vasectomy app screenshot

You’ll then receive your result in the app that’s manually-verified by the medical team. Please note that the ExSeed test kit is approved for use for testing total motile sperm count of a standard sample, however it’s not explicitly designed to confirm that zero sperm cells are present. Despite this, with the added level of analysis by our medical team upon ticking the vasectomy check box in the app, you can be confident that any moving sperm cells in your sample will be identified.

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Wearing tight pants and underwear

Studies show that men who wear looser underwear have higher sperm concentration and total sperm count compared to men who wear tighter underwear. So, lose the tight clothes and wear something loose to give your testicles some air.

CONCLUSION: learn more about how heat can affect sperm quality here.

Stress

Besides higher mortality rate and various diseases, stress is associated with low sperm quality. Stress is known to be associated with lower testosterone levels and oxidative stress with both playing an essential role in producing and maintaining healthy sperm cells.

CONCLUSION: If you feel stressed, we recommend you get some help so you can have a balanced mental health. For a stress management guide, download the ExSeed app for free and start your personalized action plan today.

Physical activity

Scientific studies show that men who are physically active have better semen parameters than men who are inactive. Fertility specialists also state that regular physical activity has beneficial impact on sperm fertility parameters and such a lifestyle can enhance the fertility status of men.

Prioritizing exercise can help improve your overall health and result in healthy, fast swimming sperm cells that have good chances of fertilizing an egg.

CONCLUSION: Try incorporating exercise in your weekly schedule to you ensure exercising at least twice weekly. We recommend a combination of cardio training and strength exercise. Read more about exercise and male fertility on our blog.

Nutrition

Fast Food
Processed foods damage the health of sperm-producing cells and cause oxidative stress, which lead to poorer sperm quality. Heavy consumption of junk food (every week) can increase the likelihood of infertility since men who consume vast amounts of unhealthy food are at risk of having poor sperm quality. Besides harming your fertility, junk food enlarges your waistline, harms your cardiovascular system, kidneys, and more.

Vegetables
Eating more fruit and vegetables can increase your sperm concentration and motility. It’s important that you consume a healthy diet filled with antioxidants and that you eat vegetables every day. Foods such as apricots and red bell peppers are high in vitamin A, which improves male fertility by nurturing healthier sperm. Men who are deficient in this vitamin tend to have slow and sluggish sperm.

Sugary snacks/beverages: several times a week Excessive consumption of high sugar items can lead to oxidative stress, which negatively impacts testosterone levels and sperm motility. Sugary snacks and beverages are also highly associated with obesity and low fertility.
CONCLUSION: To boost sperm quality, stay away from fast food, processed food, and sugary snacks or beverages. You need to implement a healthy prudent diet filled with necessary superfoods needed for good sperm production. Check out our guide to Male Fertility Superfoods. For personalized guidance and support on how you can start improving your sperm health, check out the Bootcamp.

Heat

Direct heat can inhibit optimal sperm production and cause Sperm DNA damage. Sperm cells like environments that are a couple of degrees lower than body temperature. Avoid overheating from warm blankets, seat warmers, heat from your laptop, hot showers, and saunas.

Cigarette smoking

The exposure to tobacco smoke has significant negative effects on semen quality. The damage of cigarettes and nicotine of course depends on how many cigarettes you smoke per day and for how long, but even low usage (up to 10 cigarettes / day) can inhibit healthy sperm production.  

CONCLUSION: Stay as far away from cigarette smoking as possible if you care about your general health and your fertility. Read more here.

Cell phone

When you have your cell phone in your front pocket, your testicles are exposed to electromagnetic radiation, which studies have shown to damage the sperm cells. Put your phone in the back pocket of your pants or in your jacket pocket.

BMI

There is a clear association between obesity and reduced sperm quality. At least part of the reason for this is that obese men may have abnormal reproductive hormonal profiles, which can impair sperm production and lead to infertility. 

A BMI higher than 30 can lead to several processes in the body (overheating, increase in oxidative stress in the testes, sperm DNA damage, erectile dysfunction) that can have a negative impact on male fertility. This can result in problems when trying to conceive.  

CONCLUSION: BMI is one of the risk factors that influence semen quality and, for example, sperm motility.  

Alcohol

A beer or glass of wine now and then do not really harm sperm quality. But excess alcohol drinking (more than 20 units per week) can reduce the production of normally formed sperm needed for a successful pregnancy.

CONCLUSION: If you want to stay safe, stay under 14 units of alcohol per week. For more information on how alcohol can affect male fertility, take a look at our blog: “Alcohol and Sperm Quality”.

Age

Studies show that women younger than 35 and men younger than 40 have a better chance of getting pregnant. Men can produce sperm cells almost through their entire life, but the sperm cell DNA is more fragile and prone to damage after the age of 40.

As men age, their testes tend to get smaller and softer resulting in a decline in sperm quality and production. These changes are partly because of an age-related decrease in testosterone level, which plays a very important role in sperm

production. Higher male age (>40 years) is not only associated with a decline in sperm production but also with increased sperm DNA fragmentation and worsened morphology (shape) and motility (movement). These negative effects make the sperm cells less qualified for egg fertilization.

CONCLUSION: with an age under 40, you shouldn’t have to worry much about age as a factor in itself. However, studies have shown a slow decline after the age of 30-35 years

and if you are above 40 years of age, your sperm quality can be affected due to increased sperm DNA damage resulting in a decrease of sperm motility and concentration. Remember that you cannot evaluate the quality of a sperm sample by just looking at it – this requires a sperm analysis.