Genital reconstructive surgery for male-to-female (MTF) transgender people is a complex procedure that can take several hours to complete. The most common type of surgery is called vaginoplasty, which involves the creation of a vagina from penile and scrotal tissue. Other procedures may also be performed, such as orchiectomy (removal of the testicles) and clitoroplasty (creation of a clitoris).
The specific techniques used in vaginoplasty vary depending on the surgeon’s preference and the patient’s individual anatomy. However, the basic steps of the procedure are as follows:
- The penis and scrotum are removed.
- The skin from the penis is used to create the vaginal walls.
- The urethra is repositioned and shortened.
- The labia majora and labia minora are created from skin grafts or flaps of tissue.
- The clitoris is created from erectile tissue from the penis.
Vaginoplasty is a major surgery with a long recovery period. Patients typically need to stay in the hospital for a few days after surgery and may experience pain, bleeding, and swelling. It can take several months for the vagina to heal completely and for sexual function to return.
The cost of vaginoplasty can vary depending on the surgeon’s fees, the hospital charges, and the type of anesthesia used. In the United States, the average cost of vaginoplasty is between $20,000 and $40,000.
Vaginoplasty can be a life-changing surgery for transgender women. It can help to alleviate gender dysphoria and improve physical and emotional well-being. However, it is important to remember that vaginoplasty is not a cure for all transgender issues. Patients should still seek counseling and support from their medical team and community.
Here are some additional resources that you may find helpful:
- The World Professional Association for Transgender Health: https://www.wpath.org/
- The Trevor Project: https://www.thetrevorproject.org/
- Trans Lifeline: https://www.translifeline.org/
Genital reconstructive surgery, also known as gender-affirming surgery or vaginoplasty, is a surgical procedure that transforms male genitals into female genitals. It is a significant step for individuals who are undergoing male-to-female (MTF) gender transition. It’s important to note that the specific details and techniques of the surgery may vary depending on individual preferences, medical guidelines, and the expertise of the surgical team. Here is a general overview of the procedure:
- Pre-Surgical Preparation: Before undergoing genital reconstructive surgery, individuals typically undergo a thorough evaluation and preparation process. This may include mental health assessments, hormone therapy, and living in the desired gender role for a specified period of time. The purpose is to ensure the individual is physically and emotionally prepared for the surgery.
- Surgical Procedure: The surgical technique used for MTF genital reconstructive surgery typically involves several steps:
- Orchiectomy: Prior to the main surgery, the removal of the testicles (orchiectomy) may be performed. This procedure reduces testosterone levels and helps with feminization.
- Penile Inversion Technique: The most common technique used in MTF genital reconstructive surgery is the penile inversion technique. It involves reshaping the penis and scrotal tissue to create the neovagina. The penile skin is used to line the vaginal canal, while the scrotal skin is used to create the labia.
- Clitoroplasty: During the surgery, a clitoris is created using existing penile tissue or a portion of the glans. This helps to provide erogenous sensation.
- Urethroplasty: The urethra is repositioned to allow for proper urinary function.
- Labiaplasty: The labia majora and labia minora are constructed using the reshaped scrotal skin and other available tissue.
- Post-Surgical Care and Recovery: After the surgery, individuals will typically need to stay in the hospital for a few days for monitoring and post-operative care. The recovery period varies, but it generally involves a healing process that may take several weeks to a few months. Dilators are often used to maintain the depth and width of the neovagina during the healing process.
- Follow-up Care: Regular follow-up visits with the surgical team are important for monitoring the healing process, addressing any complications, and providing support and guidance during the recovery phase.
It’s important to consult with a qualified healthcare professional who specializes in transgender healthcare and has experience in performing genital reconstructive surgeries. They can provide detailed information about the specific surgical techniques available, associated risks and complications, expected outcomes, and post-operative care.