Man thanks family and donor after first penis transplant in the US

Thomas Manning lost his in 2012 after been diagnosed with cancer

Penis transplant, US, Thomas Manning, Massachusetts General Hospital, GUVCA

Patient Thomas Manning | Image: Massachusetts General Hospital

The first penis transplant has successfully taken place in the US.

A team of surgeons at Massachusetts General Hospital performed the 15-hour operation earlier this month.

It involved surgically grafting microscopic vascular and neural structures of a donor organ onto the patient.

Thomas Manning (64) is said to be recovering well, with blood flow established and no signs of rejection or infection, the hospital says.

"While the patient is still early in the post-surgical healing process, his physicians say they are cautiously optimistic he will regain function that he lost in 2012 when a diagnosis of penile cancer led him to undergo a curative partial penectomy - or amputation of the penis", it adds.

Called a genitourinary vascularized composite allograft (GUVCA) transplant, the procedure represents the culmination of more than 3½ years of research and collaboration across multiple departments and divisions within the hospital.

According to the surgeons, the three major goals of GUVCA transplants are to reconstruct external genitalia to a more natural appearance, re-establish urinary function, and potentially achieve sexual function.

"A new chapter"

"We are hopeful that these reconstructive techniques will allow us to alleviate the suffering and despair of those who have experienced devastating genitourinary injuries and are often so despondent they consider taking their own lives," said lead surgeon Curtis L Cetrulo Junior.

"The entire transplant team has worked tirelessly to ensure that our patient is on the path to recovery, thanks in part to the gift of organ donation".

In a statement, Mr Manning wanted to tell his story to help others who may benefit from this type of procedure.

"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," he wrote.

"In sharing this success with all of you, it's my hope we can usher in a bright future for this type of transplantation".

Mr Manning thanked his family and his medical team, and extended his sympathies and gratitude to the generous family of the donor.