Author Topic: UK MTF GRS Research  (Read 421 times)

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Offline Megan.

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UK MTF GRS Research
« on: April 24, 2021, 04:56:52 pm »
A sensible part of approaching GRS is learning about the options, surgeons, risks and recovery expectations.

In the UK most GRS surgeons receive a large volume of their patients via NHS funded procedures and therefore don't need to advertise or promote themselves or their patients outcomes too heavily.

Research into these surgeons is therefore sightly tricky. Several popular trans forums and communities may discuss individuals experiences, but contacting their respective clinics is often the best approach. Some also have their own website, or there is a section on the hospital/clinic website where they work that provides info. This can seem a bit daunting for those used to the NHS simply telling them where to go, but they will be happy to talk with you either remotely or in person. You can ask them directly about your specific situation, and what they might recommend given any preferences you may have. I don't think it should be a major factor in selecting your surgeon, but they may have different waiting times for consultation and surgery. Their geographical location and travel to/from the hospital may be a factor for you.

In the UK techniques are broadly the same for any given surgery type, but there are minor differences so if you have specific physical issues or pre-existing conditions, ask if and how they might impact any surgery.

When it comes to risks, there are all those typically associated with major surgery and general anesthesia, and others specific to this type of surgery. In my own research on the internet I came across the following:

*Fistula - a connection/hole between the neo-vagina and the bowel. This might be identified and corrected during surgery, but could result in the need for a colostomy and a corrective surgery.

*Prolapse - the neo-vagina lining can protrude through the new introitus (entrance)

*Infections - there will be exposed and raw tissue and sutured wounds. Anything from a mild infection to something major is possible.

*Granulation/Hyper-granulation - sensitive new tissue can form around the fresh surgical site.

*Loss of clitoris - if you instruct you surgeon that you want them to form a clitoris from the penis, there is still a risk that this can be lost from poor blood flow. If this tissue dies then that nerve sensation and the ability to orgasm may also be lost.

*Necrosis - poor blood flow to areas of tissue after surgery can cause the death/loss of that tissue. The body will often recover and repair from this.

*Dehiscence - sutured wounds can open up, again these will typically repair in time if kept clean.

*Internal Hair - if your surgeon instructs you that hair removal is required in the surgical area, do it! There is however still a risk of hair growing inside the neo-vagina. This can be very difficult to remove, and become a source of infection or blockage.

Your chosen surgeon should discuss all of these with you, and provide statistical risk. This is however a broadly low-risk surgery in that no major blood vessels or critical organs are at risk.

In recovery - if you choose a vaginoplasty with a neo-vagina - regular dilation to the instructions given by the nurse or surgeon are very important; width can usually be recovered, but depth often can't. If you stop dilation the vagina may close up, and there is a risk of pockets of air/moisture being trapped and causing internal infection. Dilation will reduce over time, but it's for LIFE.

Be realistic in your expectations, and understand that the recovery is long. Most surgeons will advise against intercourse for several months after surgery.

Once the testicals have been removed, Testosterone levels will be permanently and substantially reduced. If you've been using a GNRH analogue blocker then your libido will likely be broadly the same after as before. If your testosterone is substantially above cis-female range before surgery, you may notice a drop in libido. Without any major source of testosterone or estrogen in your body, you will be reliant on one or other of these drugs the rest of your life.

Above all, ask questions! Speak with the surgeon and their nursing team. They've got more experience than anyone else and have a shared interest in you making a happy and healthy recovery.

Good luck! X

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"Life is a travelling to the edge of knowledge, then a leap taken." - D. H. Lawrence

Offline Northern Star Girl

  • Previously Alaskan Danielle
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Re: UK MTF GRS Research
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2021, 01:41:12 pm »
@Megan.
Dear Megan
Thank you so very much for posting your very informative treatise regarding Gender Correction Surgery and explaining many of the terms used and also the issues involved.
Very helpful to many of our members contemplating GCS surgeries.

Your concluding advice is right on....
"Above all, ask questions! Speak with the surgeon and their nursing team. They've got more experience than anyone else and have a shared interest in you making a happy and healthy recovery."

Again, thank you for sharing.
HUGS,
Danielle
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Offline April_Girl

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Re: UK MTF GRS Research
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2021, 06:09:35 am »
Thank you and very informative it now has me now on the right track and ready for my 2 consultant appointment's, thank you so much xxx

Offline Megan.

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Re: UK MTF GRS Research
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2021, 06:14:05 am »
Thank you and very informative it now has me now on the right track and ready for my 2 consultant appointment's, thank you so much xxx
You'll be fine. They just want to understand that you're aware of what is involved and the real and permanent impacts. Good luck. X

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"Life is a travelling to the edge of knowledge, then a leap taken." - D. H. Lawrence

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