Long-Term Sensitivity and Patient-Reported Functionality of the Neoclitoris After Gender Reassignment Surgery

Hannes Sigurjónsson, Caroline Möllermark, Johan Rinder, Filip Farnebo, T Kalle Lundgren
Journal of Sexual Medicine 2017, 14 (2): 269-273

INTRODUCTION: A cornerstone of treating gender dysphoria for transgender women is gender reassignment surgery (GRS) encompassing vaginoplasty and clitoroplasty. The neoclitoris is harvested as a flap with a neurovascular pedicle from the proximal dorsal part of the glans penis. Few long-term follow-ups exist on postoperative sensation and patient-reported sexual functionality of the neoclitoris.

AIM: To examine the sensitivity of the neoclitoris and its relation to orgasm and sexual function at least 1 year after GRS.

METHODS: Twenty-two patients were included, with a mean follow-up of 37 months (range = 12-63) after initial surgery. Tactile and vibratory sensitivities were measured with Semmes-Weinstein monofilaments and the Bio-Thesiometer vibratory measurement device, respectively. A questionnaire was provided to the patients, as were interview questions about body image, orgasm, pain, and general satisfaction with the surgery.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Tactile and vibratory sensitivities of the neoclitoris and questionnaire on satisfaction with orgasm, sexual function, and general satisfaction.

RESULTS: The average tactile threshold for the clitoris was 12.5 g/mm2 and the average vibratory threshold was 0.3 μm. Most participants (86%) experienced orgasm after surgery, had no or little pain, and were satisfied with the surgery. No statistical correlation was found between better or worse objective pressure and vibratory thresholds and patient answers to questions about the clitoris in the Body Image Scale for Transsexuals questionnaire.

CONCLUSION: The neoclitoris derived from the glans penis in GRS provides long-term clitoral sensation that is erogenous. Overall, the vast majority of patients who undergo male-to female GRS experience orgasm and are satisfied with the surgery.

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