The First Successful Penis Transplant Has Been Achieved

Senior Contributor
03.13.15 21 Comments


Yes, the medical profession is entirely too obsessed with dongs. We know this all too well. But despite that, the world’s first successful penis transplant is cause for more than Beavis and Butt-head-like guffawing. Oh, we’re totally going to do that, it’s just also medically a big deal.

Speaking of which, Quartz’s coverage of this breakthrough is full of “That’s what she said!” moments like:

But the patient surprised doctors with the speed with which he gained full use of the organ.

His success makes him a member of a small, but growing club.

It is a seminal moment for medicine.

That last one is the line that opens the article. We see what you did there, Quartz.

Anyway, this is important not just because tasteless jokes will take on a new medical reality. The wang is actually a complicated organ, and not just medically. The first penis transplant was actually removed after just two weeks because the patient and his wife couldn’t deal with the psychological aspects of it. Not just getting it attached, but getting it fully working, involves a delicate connection of nerves, skin and the like, so having it hang in there for three months and be up and running is an achievement. Even with that, immunosuppressant drugs and counseling are going to be the order of, well, the rest of the patient’s life, unless he wants his new penis to rot off.

And before you ask, no, this does not mean you can just get a new penis because you want to intimidate the guys at the gym. There are actually some very serious ethical issues tied to penis transplants that we still have to work out, and it’s not an easy procedure; this particular transplant took nine hours. But, for medical science, when it gets hard, they just get in there and really give it their all, and the results are often a happy ending.

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