Lalita to Lalit: Maharashtra cop undergoes first round of surgery for genital reconstruction
In the first round of the three-hour surgery on Friday, doctors at state-run St George’s Hospital started the process to elongate Salve’s urethra by creating a tissue conduit.mumbai Updated: May 26, 2018 12:35 IST
Doctors at St George’s Hospital performed the first round of genital reconstruction surgery on Lalita Salve, the Beed constable who won a legal case to be recognised as a man.
Salve, who was raised as a female since childhood, underwent a genetic test called Karyotyping last year that established the cop’s gender as male. Salve had approached the Bombay high court in November 2017 seeking a month’s leave to undergo ‘gender reassignment surgery’. A panel of doctors was formed at Sir JJ hospital to evaluate the case.
“Since the cop’s genitals looked like that of a female, the family may have gotten confused,” said a doctor who was a part of the panel.
In the first round of the three-hour surgery on Friday, doctors at state-run St George’s Hospital started the process to elongate Salve’s urethra by creating a tissue conduit. It will take nearly a year and a half to complete all surgeries, said Dr Madhukar Gaikwad, medical superintendent at the hospital.
“Salve’s urethra is small. At present, Salve urinates in a sitting position like females. Currently,we have only formed the base of the urethra. The next round will be performed three months later after which Salve will be able to urinate like a man,” said Dr Rajat Kapoor, head of department, plastic surgery at St George’s Hospital.
Salve’s uncle who was waiting outside the operation theatre said he was very happy the procedure being finally carried out.
Doctors added that Salve has an underdeveloped penis which was embedded in surrounding tissues.
“We extricated it from the surrounding tissues after which it has become five centimetres long,” Dr Kapoor said.
Salve is going to remain hospitalised the next week for doctors to follow up on the recovery.
Later, a hair transplant procedure will be conducted to give Salve a moustache and a beard. “We may have to perform a hair transplant procedure to give Salve a beard. We will ask Salve what shape he likes, depending on which we will do the transplant,” Dr Kapoor said.
While the procedure to create a male genitalia has begun, doctors said a biopsy of the testicles will show if there is sperm production. Doctors added that Salve will over time be able to confidently present himself as a man.
First Published: May 26, 2018 12:16 IST