Author Topic: Six-Weeks Post-Op and Dilation Question  (Read 499 times)

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Offline AlyssaJ

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Six-Weeks Post-Op and Dilation Question
« on: May 02, 2021, 10:32:00 pm »
I know I don't come around here much anymore. Honestly, life has been on a crazy ride the last few years with my career really taking off and transition just kind of on a steady pace. However, six (almost seven) weeks ago, I conquered one of the last peaks. I had GCS with Dr. Katherine Gast at UW Health in Madison, WI. Robot assisted penile inversion with the option to use a peritoneal pull-through to add extra depth if needed. Ended up with 15cm (~5.9 in) of depth without need for the PPT. I'm happy to report that recovery has been very smooth so far.

I'll say, I was a little surprised at how almost anti-climatic the whole thing felt. Like I see so many women who have huge celebrations and it's like this massive culmination for them. For me, it was more like a sigh of relief and a release to finally get on with the rest of my life. Not that transition is ever really "over" per-se, but definitely this moves it fully to the background (which it had almost entirely been at this point anyway).

So the question I have about dilation is just looking for tips and tricks to advance up the sizes. Dr. Gast does not provide the typical plastic Soul Source dilators. Instead she provides a set from CalExotics which are made of silicone, tapered and have a slight curve. I can take all of the #4 (5" long, 1.0" dia.) no problem. For the last 10 days, I've been starting with that one and then moving to the #5 (5.5", 1.25") and can't get it more than 2/3 of the way and I'm not seeing any progress. The issue seems to be with my pelvic floor muscles (as opposed to depth). While I am working with a Pelvic Floor Therapist, I was curious if anyone here and any sage wisdom to share on ways to more easily increase the width your muscles will allow.

Offline Oldandcreaky

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Re: Six-Weeks Post-Op and Dilation Question
« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2021, 03:13:37 am »
I had my GCS about 35 years ago, but I remember my surgeon telling me to use the dilator like a lever to stretch those muscles.

Online sarahc

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Re: Six-Weeks Post-Op and Dilation Question
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2021, 07:57:29 am »
I was told that the answer to some dilation difficulties can be to simply increase the frequency of the dilations, and this is especially true in the initial months following surgery. So if you're doing 3x per day, bump it up to 4x per day. Obviously, you'd want to consult your doctor, but you may want to ask if this is a possibility and whether it would help.

You may also want to consider investing the Soul Source dilators, as I have heard numerous people say that they are in fact better. Maybe buy one to see if it's better before investing in a whole set?

Also, I too had the same emotional reaction to my surgery: "Yay, it's done and now I can move on." Since my surgery in January, I have had many more-fulfilling moments in my life, like re-connecting with friends and getting back involved in activities knowing that they won't be interrupted again by some surgical procedure.

Sarah
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48 years young.
Known that I am trans since...forever.
First therapy session / decided to transition / hair removal: October 2018
HRT: January 2019 (journal https://www.susans.org/forums/index.phpVF/topic,244009.0.html)
VFS: September 2019; three-month report here
Full-time: April 2020
FFS: August 2020
SRS: January 2021

Offline AlyssaJ

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Re: Six-Weeks Post-Op and Dilation Question
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2021, 09:18:11 am »
I was told that the answer to some dilation difficulties can be to simply increase the frequency of the dilations, and this is especially true in the initial months following surgery. So if you're doing 3x per day, bump it up to 4x per day. Obviously, you'd want to consult your doctor, but you may want to ask if this is a possibility and whether it would help.

This is a really good thought. I might have to try that for a while (of course finding the extra time in the day to do it might be a challenge  :D ). 

Regarding the Soul Source dilators, I have heard some say they like them better and others that don't. So that is on my radar too. I know that Gast's approach is after I can handle the #5 CalExotic, she switches over to the Soul Source silicone sit-on dilators (straight with a more blunt end). I was thinking of maybe buying one of the narrower ones and seeing if that helps.

Online Northern Star Girl

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Re: Six-Weeks Post-Op and Dilation Question
« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2021, 07:05:56 pm »
@AlyssaJ
Dear AlyssaJ
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