Genital reconstructive surgery (GRS)

The majority of men who complete their transition to the point of legal recognition of male sex, never undergo genital reconstructive surgery (GRS). This is mainly due to the huge personal and financial costs of this surgery.

For men, GRS is never a single surgery. It is always multiple surgeries. Despite this, there are men who remain personally committed to undergoing genital GRS and there are members of FTM Australia who have had obtained these surgeries. In these cases, they have travelled overseas to get their surgeries.

If you are committed to having GRS, you will need to fully research the methods (types and techniques for surgeries); the surgeons available around the world; and any other aspects which are important to you (such as urinary function, size, costs etc). Currently, FTM Australia cannot recommend any surgeons for genital reconstructive surgery in Australia.

The decision to have GRS is more complicated than the decision to have chest reconstructive surgery. What sort of GRS procedure or technique do you want? Once you settle on a technique, you’ll need to consider

  • the number of stages,
  • graft donor sites,
  • types and sizes of implants,
  • costs,
  • recovery time,
  • and more.

It can be helpful to draw up a ‘shopping list’ of what you would like (and what you do not want) then find the surgeon who best matches your requirements. Given that surgeons offering GRS for men usually specialise in only one technique, your individual ‘shopping list’ probably won’t be met by an Australian surgeon. Keep an open mind. If GRS is something you definitely want, you will need to factor in overseas travel.

There are currently several overseas teams that accept international patients for GRS, providing that the WPATH International Standards of Care (external link) are met. These teams have been developing their technique for many years and have considerable experience with performing GRS. In addition, these teams usually have dedicated recovery facilities for their patients.

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