Trans men, assigned female at birth but identifying as male, may undergo various procedures as part of their transition process to align their physical characteristics with their gender identity. One such procedure is phalloplasty, which involves constructing a neophallus (new penis). It’s important to note that the procedures for creating a neophallus have limitations, and not all trans men choose to pursue surgical options. Here are some key points regarding the options available for trans men:
- Phalloplasty: Phalloplasty is a complex surgical procedure that involves constructing a neophallus using tissue grafts, typically taken from the forearm or other areas of the body. The procedure may also involve implanting an erectile device to allow for erection. Phalloplasty can provide a trans man with a phallic structure, but it may not possess the same level of sensation or function as a cisgender male’s penis.
- Metoidioplasty: Metoidioplasty is another surgical option for trans men. It involves releasing the ligaments that restrict the growth of the clitoris, which has typically been enlarged through hormone therapy. The procedure may also include urethral lengthening to enable urination from a standing position. However, metoidioplasty does not typically result in a full-size phallus.
- Size and Function: It’s important to note that the size and function of the neophallus can vary depending on the surgical technique used, individual anatomy, and other factors. While surgical procedures can provide a reconstructed phallus, they may not possess the same sensation or function as a natural penis. It’s crucial for individuals considering these procedures to have realistic expectations and thoroughly discuss potential outcomes and limitations with their healthcare providers.
- Personal Choices: Not all trans men choose to pursue surgical options for creating a neophallus. Some individuals may opt for non-surgical approaches, such as packing (using prosthetic devices to create the appearance of a bulge) or using prosthetic penises during sexual activities. Each person’s journey is unique, and the decisions regarding surgical interventions are deeply personal and based on individual preferences and goals.
It’s important for trans men considering any form of gender-affirming surgery to consult with qualified healthcare professionals who specialize in transgender healthcare. These professionals can provide personalized guidance, discuss the available options, and help individuals make informed decisions about their transition goals.