Thomas Manning, who suffered from penile cancer in 2012, became the first person to undergo a penis transplant in the United States, according to surgeons at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. Manning, 64, had part of his penis amputated when he was diagnosed with cancer.
The surgery took 15 hours over May 8 and 9, taking time to match up the vascular and neural structures of the donor penis and the recipient’s body. And before that, researchers from multiple departments of the hospital worked for more than three years on the concept.
The goals of Thomas Manning’s penis transplant was to reconstruct the appearance, make the urinary process work, and then possibly regain sexual function. The hospital said doctors were “cautiously optimistic” that Manning will regain all the function he lost from cancer.
Manning had been left with an inch-long “stump” after cancer and felt hopeless when it came to relationships with women. There has only been one other successful penis transplant in the world; in 2014, a South African transplant recipient fathered a child.
Thomas Manning said that he feels good and barely felt any pain. He also released a statement thanking his doctors and the family of the donor:
“Today I begin a new chapter filled with personal hope and hope for others who have suffered genital injuries, particularly for our service members who put their lives on the line and suffer serious damage as a result. In sharing this success with all of you, it’s my hope we can usher in a bright future for this type of transplantation.”
Thomas Manning’s penis transplant is part of a new program, that in the end, will help wounded veterans, cancer patients, and victims of accidents get better not just physically, but psychologically. Massachusetts General and Johns Hopkins are both working on their next patients, including a combat veteran and a car-accident victim.