Lower Brain: Wounded Vet Gets World’s First Penis And Scrotum Transplant
Photo: faustasyan (Getty Images)
Any man or woman who puts their life on the line in order to keep us safe deserves all the kudos in the world. And while some of those men and women do not lose their life, some are left with brutal injuries. And one of those people is an Afghanistan war veteran whose life changed forever when he was involved in a bomb explosion.
In a 14-hour operation, a military veteran whose genitals were blown off by a bomb received an extraordinary transplant: a penis, scrotum and portion of the abdominal wall, taken from a deceased organ donor https://t.co/psevaPACFt
— At War (@NYTimesAtWar) April 23, 2018
The vet, who has decided to stay under anonymity, lost his genitals during the explosion. But now thanks to 11 surgeons at Johns Hopkins Hospital that has all changed. According to Men’s Health, the vet underwent a first of its kind 14-hour-operation that concluded with the vet receiving a penis, scrotum and part of the abdominal wall from a deceased donor. That’s right, folks. This gentleman will now be walking around with another man’s genitals.
According to The New York Times, the testicles were not transplanted because they still house the donor’s sperm, which would raise ethical issues later if the veteran chose to have children. Before the life-changing surgery, the patient never thought he’d be able to marry or date again. Under the condition of anonymity, he spoke to the Times about how the surgery offers him new perspective on the future.
“That injury, I felt like it banished me from a relationship,” he said. “Like, that’s it, you’re done, you’re by yourself for the rest of your life. I struggled with even viewing myself as a man for a long time.”
And here’s what W.P. Andrew Lee, M.D, a professor and director of plastic and reconstructive surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine had to say about this historic surgery:
“We are hopeful that this transplant will help restore near-normal urinary and sexual functions for this young man.”
Doctors will keep an eye on the vet as there is a possibility his body may reject the new penis. Doctors have given the man Immunosuppressive medications to minimize the likelihood of that happening.
And that my friends is why science is so damn important to us all.