Urethroplastypalooza, Part 1: This Hole Was Made For Me
This is it. Wednesday, June 15th, two days shy of Spot’s first anniversary. Take 3 in trying to stop scar tissue from “healing” my dong’s urethra shut. Stage 1 of a 2-stage urethroplasty.
(Or is it Stage 2 of a 3-stage? I had a suprapubic catheter put in a month ahead of time, just to give the whole area a chance to calm down if anything was inflamed from trying to pee through my stricture. But anyhow.)
For this surgery, Dr. Elliott used buccal (inside of the mouth) tissue to rebuild the urethra’s strictured area from scratch. And for as cringe-worthy as “we’re stripping the skin from the inside of your mouth” sounds, I can easily say that this surgery was both 1) the most painless, and 2) the oddest-looking, as far as results go, that I’ve had yet.
Pictured above: what the *outside* of the harvested area looked like, three days after surgery. That’s not hair on my lip; it literally looked black on one side from bruising.
But as far as pain went? There was so little, I was off the Percocet the docs gave me after only a day and a half. I could feel the ends of some thread poking from where the inside of my mouth was sewn back up, but other than that… Y’know when you accidentally bite the inside of your mouth, and it’s a little raw in that spot for a couple days, but it doesn’t really hurt? Imagine that feeling, only on one entire side of your mouth. I’ve burned my mouth on pizza and had it hurt more.
The only *really* annoying part is how I could only open my mouth a tiny fraction on my ‘good’ side at first. It’s slowly getting more forgiving, and should be back to a normal range of motion within a month or so, but watching me try to eat this first week has been pure comedy. Picture a sloth, using one hand to hold a forkful of something mushed flat, its other hand sloooowly trying to guide the fork through the tiny slot of its open mouth, and you’ll get the idea.
It was that same Friday night, a couple days after surgery, that I discovered the sutures sealing a giant pad of gauze in place right underneath the base of my penis and over my vulva. (You’d think I’d notice something like that sooner, right? But nope. Like I said, no pain!) This is when I started to get a little nervous. “I’m sure they have a perfectly good reason why they sewed my vagina shut,” I thought to myself hopefully.
And indeed, I found on my follow-up visit that next Monday, nobody had actually sewn anything shut– it just *looked* like they did. A quick few snips, some forceps tugs, and the sutures and gauze pads were gone, leaving a hole underneath the base of Spot, riiiight where my original factory-issued urethra used to end.
Here’s what’s going on inside that hole, as it was explained to me. The surgeons put a small slit down part of the rebuilt urethra, facing the outside, and lined it up with a hole to the skin’s surface. For most FTM guys, this hole’s usually made to go through the scrotum, and that’s where you pee from for the next few months. Since I didn’t have a scrotoplasty, they put my hole right above the top edge of my vagina. You could be forgiven for thinking the pee comes out there, it’s so close.
(That’s right. All you confused eight-year-olds out there can consider yourselves justified; there’s at least *one* person in the world who pees out their vag. Kinda sorta.)
Now all I have to do is wait three months before I go back in to have my doc scope around the area and see how the former stricture area’s healing. If no more scar tissue’s cropping up, then *six* months from now, they’ll be sewing the urethra slit shut again, and this whole year-long journey can finally come to a happy end.
As an aside, three cheers for my follow-up doctor for agreeing to take photos of my crotch as soon as she’d opened the area back up. She got even more bonus points from me when she aimed the camera and said, “Open wide… and say ‘cheese’!” 😀