Why We’re Covering This: Sex is an important part of the human condition, and we’re always happy when people are given a new lease on life. Also, the first penis transplant in the United States just happened, so what better time to look at the procedure that went before.
A South African 21-year-old who lost all but one centimeter of his penis in a botched adult circumcision three years ago is the first successful recipient of a full penis transplant. He can now pee, get hard, ‘gasm, and cum with his newly attached member — hurrah!
According to the BBC and Sky News, adult circumcisions are a common rite of adulthood in South Africa, with 250 penis amputations happening each year in the country. Each year dozens to hundreds of boys die when such surgeries fail.
Other doctors around the world have tried penis transplants before, but their patient’s bodies have rejected the penises as foreign tissue. South African doctors started their patient on a regimen of immunosuppressant drugs long before the surgery to reduce the likelihood of rejection.
The surgery itself took nine hours and required the intricate, careful reconnection of blood vessels and nerves similar to what’s required in face transplants.
Though doctors initially predicted that it’d take the South American patient two years to regain full penile function, but he’s almost fully operational after just four months with doctors predicting full sensation regained in two more years.
While penis transplants might not seem like an important, life-saving procedure, one of the surgeons Dr. Andre Van der Merwe told the BBC, “Any of these young men when they have penile amputations are ostracized, stigmatized and take their own life. If you don’t have a penis you are essentially dead, if you give a penis back you can bring them back to life.”
Sky News says the surgery could also eventually help guys who lose their dicks to penis cancer or men with physiological erectile dysfunction.
Mostly, we’re curious who the donor is and whether the recipient prefers his new one more.
Originally published on March 13, 2015