A team of surgeons in the US has performed the world’s first full penis and scrotum transplant.
Doctors at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, carried out the operation on a veteran who was injured in Afghanistan.
They transplanted an entire penis, scrotum and partial abdominal wall from a deceased donor. The donor’s testicles were not used in the operation.
Nine plastic surgeons and two urological surgeons were involved in the 14-hour operation on March 26.
They say the soldier should be able to regain sexual function within the coming months.
Dr WP Andrew Lee, professor and director of plastic and reconstructive surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, said: “We are hopeful that this transplant will help restore near-normal urinary and sexual functions for this young man.”
The soldier, who wishes to remain anonymous, said in a statement: “It’s a real mind-boggling injury to suffer, it is not an easy one to accept.
“When I first woke up, I felt finally more normal … (with) a level of confidence as well. Confidence … like finally I’m OK now.”
Dr Lee said that while it is possible to reconstruct a penis using tissue from other parts of the body, the procedure would require a prosthesis implant to achieve an erection.
In medical terms, a surgery where a body part or tissue is transferred from one individual to another is called a vascularised composite allotransplantation.
The process involves transplanting skin, bone, muscles, tendons and blood vessels.
The world’s first successful penis transplant was performed in 2014 by doctors in South Africa.