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Man receives first ever penis and scrotum transplant

A US war veteran who served in Afghanistan has become the first ever recipient of a combined penis and scrotum transplant.

Doctors say the surgery last month was a success and the patient is likely to be discharged from hospital this week.

They say he will eventually regain full sexual function.

It was while serving in Afghanistan that the man lost part of his penis, scrotum and abdominal wall in a bomb blast, although doctors say the testicles from the deceased donor were not transplanted.

Emergency medicine specialist Dr Charl van Loggerenberg explains how it's possible to transplant the scrotum without the testicles.

The one is effectively just the mechanical carrying vehicle of the other.

Dr Charl van Loggerenbeg, Emergency Medicine Specialist

Speaking to CapeTalk host Sara-Jayne King, Dr van Loggerenberg says also transplanting the donor's testicles could have raised some difficult ethical questions.

A similar example might be easier to think about if we compare the female anatomy. So it's the location of the eggs versus who the physical mom is who's actually carrying the eggs.

Dr Charl van Loggerenbeg, Emergency Medicine Specialist

The first successful penis transplant was carried out by a team of surgeons from Stellenbosch University in 2017.

Listen to the full interview with Dr Charl van Loggerenberg here:


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