A 64-year-old man, Thomas Manning, who is suffering from cancer of the penis, has made history after he became the first person to receive a penis transplant in the United States, Massachusetts General Hospital announced on Monday.
The penile cancer sufferer underwent the 15-hour transplant operation, called a genitourinary vascularized composite allograft (GUVCA) transplant, earlier this month.
“Our courageous patient, Thomas Manning, continues to do well, and we are optimistic about this outcome and future,” said Dr. Curtis Cetrulo, who helped lead the surgical team along with Dr. Dicken Ko, at a press conference on Monday.
According to American online news medium, CBS Boston, Cetrulo said that due to penile cancer most of Manning’s organ had been removed during a procedure in 2012 known as a penile penectomy.
“He’s doing well so far,” Cetrulo said. “I just spoke to him this morning, he’s up and about and out of bed.”
The replacement came from a deceased donor through the New England Organ Bank.
“The surgical part, we feel, has been successful,” said Cetrulo. “But this is an allograph, it’s from an unrelated individual, and that requires immunosuppression for life, basically, until we can conquer that problem with immunologic tolerance research.”
The hospital said the three purposes of the procedure were to “reconstruct external genitalia to a more natural appearance, re-establish urinary function, and potentially achieve sexual function.”
Cancer of the penis or penile cancer is an uncommon cancer, and is most often diagnosed in men between the ages of 50 and 70.