A transgender woman has revealed how her desperation for sex reassignment surgery led her to try and cut off her genitals.

Kirsty Cass, of Crawley, West Sussex, says she almost bled to death after using a Stanley knife to partially sever her penis.

The 49-year-old council worker, who will soon have proper sex reassignment surgery, said she wanted to be a woman since she was a child.

She said: “I was so desperately unhappy in my own skin that I would have done anything to change myself.

“I realise now how dangerous it was to try to give myself a DIY sex change – I could have easily bled to death – but it seemed like the obvious solution at the time.”

Ms Cass says she realised she could die and called an ambulance. Doctors reattached the organ so it could be used in future surgery.

After recovering, she began living as a woman full-time and was diagnosed with gender dysphoria.

She says her friends, former wife and 21-year-old daughter are all supportive of her new life.