As far as science is concerned, a surgery in which one man's disembodied penis is successfully attached to another is quite the feat in modern medicine. While there have been two recorded penis transplants recorded in medical journals -- only one of which was successful -- another one will soon attempt to help a young American solider injured in a bomb blast in Afghanistan.
The organ will come from a donor from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore and could only take a matter of months before the organ is fully functional. Like... fully functional. Sexually. This could mean a lot for other men with genital injuries -- and there are more than you'd think. Of the 1,367 men in military service who were injured by IEDs between 2001 - 2013, a large number of them "lost all or part of their penises or testicles," according to The New York Times.
The 12-hour procedure, in which doctors "use microscopic surgery to attach nerves and blood vessels in the donor penis to those remaining in the patient's body" has only had one instance of success in which a 21-year-old South African recipient regained complete use of his member in three months.
If the transplant goes successfully for the soldier, wounded veterans will have the chance to regain a huge part of their lives stolen by war. "I think one would agree it is as devastating as anything that our wounded warriors suffer, for a young man to come home in his early 20s with the pelvic area completely destroyed," says Dr. W. P. Andrew Lee, the chairman of plastic and reconstructive surgery at Johns Hopkins, "Some hope to father children... I think that is a realistic goal."
The one catch in the process is that the testicles are not part of the package deal, but that doesn't mean kids are out of the picture, considering the recipient of the only successful penis transplant is reportedly a father now.
Penis transplants are still being perfected, but anything's possible as the science progresses.
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Jeremy Glass is a writer for Thrillist and might just get an extra one tacked on just in case.