The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has developed artificial testis that is a boon to people suffering from the problem of having both underdeveloped male and female genitals as well as cancer in the abdomen.
Doctors at the premier referral hospital have already operated upon over 50 patients suffering from such problems, achieving 100 per cent success.
"We are producing artificial testis and have treated over 50 patients with not a single case of rejection. From two to three-month-old babies suffering from cancer to a 20-year-old boy, our patients have not reported any complication," said DK Gupta, head of paediatric surgery at the AIIMS.
"We are producing them in our laboratories from Teflon medical grade material. And are ready to do it in any shape and size as per the requirement of a patient."
"Through a simple surgical procedure, we put them inside the scrotum of the patient in case they were absent or were removed due to medical purposes. Though the artificial testis cannot produce sperms, yet it helps the scrotum to grow normally," Gupta told.
"We have seen patients suffering from inferiority complex and the operation gives a big psychological boost to them. Moreover, patients don't have to pay a single rupee for these artificial body parts."
The doctor said inter-sex patients have both underdeveloped testis and an ovary. "In such cases, we replace the abnormal testis and put an artificial one."
"The abnormal testis are a source of cancer in the abdomen and we remove them for the sake of patients' safety. In two to three-month-old baby boys, we found the problem and removed the cancerous testis," Gupta said.
He said generally people come to get one testis removed but "we have conducted double testis replacements in at least six patients".
"In case of a single testis replacement, the patient never faces any problem as the second one produces both the male hormone and sperms. In case of a double testis replacement, the patient needs male hormone injection in due intervals," said Gupta, who is also chief of the SAARC paediatric surgeons' association.
Elaborating on the development, he said though the operation takes around 15-20 minutes, they keep a patient for at least four days for observation.
"Though we sterilise it (artificial testis) twice before inserting inside the body of the patient, yet we carry out a number of tests and observe the acceptance per cent of patients over four days," Gupta explained, adding that patients from all parts of the country are coming for this treatment.