Surgeons all set to carry out penis transplant for wounded war veterans of United States. The ultimate objective of this is to restore urinary and sexual functions of those who suffer severe genital injuries during war.
The world's first successful penis transplant was carried out in South Africa, last year. The team at Johns Hopkins University (JHU) plan to operate on 60 veterans as part of a trial. The first procedure will involve a penis donated by a young deceased donor, with his family's permission. And according to the team at JHU the hope for the veteran is that sensation will return within six to 12 months.
The chances for one to father own child will be depending on the extent of the injury and success of the operation. Only one successful transplant has taken place before and makes it highly risky. Like other major transplant surgery the operation carries risks such as infections or bleeding during the procedure. And the side-effects of taking life-long anti-rejection drugs is also to be considered. Patients will also be screened extensively to make sure they can cope with the psychological impacts of surgery. There have been concerns with other complex operations - hand and face transplants for example - that patients may find it difficult to accept the donated organs as their own.
Recent research involving young military personnel suggests 7% suffer genital injuries in combat. Many are due to blast injuries from improvised explosive devices which are being increasingly deployed. And though protective gear exists, researchers say some soldiers choose not to wear it as it can get in the way of them moving around quickly. Only two other penis transplants have previously been reported. One took place in China in 2006. Accounts suggested the operation went well, but the penis was later rejected. The other operation took place in South Africa, involving a young man who had been left with just 1cm of his original penis as a result of a botched circumcision. His medical team said there was extensive discussion about whether the operation, which is not life-saving in the same way as a heart transplant, was ethical.