World’s first successful penis transplant completed after ‘botched circumcision’
Doctors in South Africa have carried out the world’s first successful penis transplant.
The 21-year-old man, who has not been named, lost his original penis after a botched traditional circumcision attempt more than three years ago.
However, a team of experts at Tygerberg Hospital in Cape Town have carried out a first-of-its-kind surgery, transplanting a spare penis onto the man.
The man’s new penis – which took doctors nine hours to surgically attach – came from a man who had died and donated his organs.
The surgery was carried out in December – and the man has now recovered full use of his penis, even getting erections and becoming sexually active.
Professor Andre van der Merwe, head of Stellenbosch University’s Division of Urology, said: “For a young man of 18 or 19 years the loss of his penis can be deeply traumatic… There are even reports of suicide among these young men.
“What we did was to manage the small blood vessels in the penis, which are really only a little bit more than a millimetre wide, to existing blood vessels in the abdomen that has come down, and we could connect that up.
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“Our goal was that he would be fully functional at two years and we are very surprised by his rapid recovery.
“We were very thankful that it all worked out in the end and the patient’s doing well… The patient is sexually active again and is very happy.”
Prof Frank Graewe, head of the Division of Plastic Reconstructive Surgery at Stellenbosch University, added: “It’s a massive breakthrough.
“We’ve proved that it can be done – we can give someone an organ that is just as good as the one that he had.
“It was a privilege to be part of this first successful penis transplant in the world.”
Nine other men who lost their original penises for various reasons are lined up for the procedure.