Let's approach this vagina delicately...

And with a minimum of stifled laughter. For it is an honest question on physiological function. YOU, IN THE BACK…I see you snickering already! Detention.

Ok, so me and my boy (Mr. Jarbaby) were watching a special on MSNBC regarding a transgender operation in which a man named Chris became Christine.

The breast implants I get, the hormones to change her voice, the electrolisis to get rid of facial hair, the removal of the twig and berries…this is all understandable.

Then the doctor casually threw in the fact that a ‘faux’ vagina would be fashioned from the extracted penis, and a ‘canal’ would be created about six inches deep to enable Christine to have regular vaginal penetration sex.

Great! Fantastic! I think we all love penetration. Then Mr. Jarbaby turned to me and said, “Isn’t that tremendously unhealthy?” And I had to agree.

A woman’s body, specifically, the vaginal canal, is a mucus membrane, capable of cleaning itself and flushing it’s own system. In addition, it creates its own lubrication to keep things, in essence, running smooth.

This woman now just has, frankly, a hole, with a definitive STOPPING point, like a deep pit. Strikes me as a breeding ground of bacteria and infection. Even if she has nothing but protected sex and nary a drop of semen touches her insides, isn’t a dark, warm, crevice the ideal breeding ground for disease just through day to day living?

Is it required for transgender man to woman people to douche every day or some equivalent? Six inches deep seems a little high maintenance for just your basic shower activity.


And um, how would she pee?
And uh…uh…lubrication for sex?

Well, they said that urination would still be from the urethra, and this was a separate orifice. I assume she’ll just have to use artificial lubrication, which could end up being another health hazard.


Brace yourself (well, you DID ask)…


Suffice it to say that, post-op, you use gradually increasing diameters of rubber dilators (read: dildos) to stretch the new skin, with lots of lubricant, don’t have sex for 6 weeks, and then be VERY CAREFUL, drink plenty of liquids because your healing bottom is going to stink and peeing a lot will help flush it, and douche once or twice a day to keep the vagina clean.

And you needed to hear this:

Now, aren’t you glad you asked? :smiley:

Hrm. I guess so. So what we’re concluding here is that a hoo ha made out of part of the colon WOULD have sensation and self lubrication?

Seems to me that at that point, leave well enough alone and the patient can just have anal sex. It’s not like they’re creating a clitoris for them. Sounds almost like unnecessary surgery.


I’ve heard of a hybrid operation which combines all of the above–using part of the penis for a faux clitoris, the rest of it (inverted) for the first few inches of the canal, and a chunk of colon for the rest of the canal.

And no, for someone willing to have the unit lopped off, ‘just having anal sex’ just won’t do. It’d be like taking a BB gun to a rifle range. Same motions, same physics, same goals, but very much not the same thing.

Plus, it’s a necessity for transgendered’s who wish to ‘pass.’

The misinformation about this subject both on TV and the web truly saddens me.

Go here -

Anne Lawrence, M.D.

you can find much good info, including detailed operational descriptions, photos of “results”, reviews of doctor’s techniques, etc.

And no, hormones do not effectively make any voice changes.

Breast implants are optional. Hormones can typically make breasts that are about 1 cup size lower than the mother or sisters of the patient, typically.

And a clitoris is normally created.

Let me offer a slightly different method of gaining honest insight into this area. This is a woman who has been a trans-gender adult for a long time, married for over 15 years. Jennifer Mahoney’s Home Page is revealing and honest. Go and read.

I recently had a reason to think about this topic a lot. I read a book called Tran-Sister Radio by author Chris Bohjalian. The book was researched MOST meticulously, and Mr. Bohjalian worked with the leading centers in trans-gender surgery when doing the background work. This link provides audio interviews with both Mr. Bohjalian, and following his, an expert in trans-gender surgeries.

The book is extremely graphic in it’s descriptions of the medical process. It’s also a hell of a read. I highly recommend it. Upon finishing it, I immediately gave it to a gay couple I’m close to. They’ve got a friend dealing with this process.

IMHO it’s wonderful to witness the application of the newest techniques in micro-surgery and plastic re-construction being used to let an adult fulfill their inner destiny. :slight_smile:

And, go ** Anthracite **. Excellent, excellent link.


Actually, dilators are not dildos and they are generally not made of rubber, but rather out of a hard surgical-grade plastic such as Deltrin. Soft silicone or jelly rubber dildos will not work for dilation; to work they have to be hard. Also, the function of dilation is as much to stretch and reposition the muscles around the neovagina as to stretch the skin.

I haven’t looked at Dr. Lawrence’s site myself, but from what I’ve heard it’s decent. The site I used to use went away when the doctor who ran it retired, and I get the rest of my information from my psychiatrist. When I actually get closer to the point where I start searching for a surgeon, I will probably research the issues more closely. Researching it now is somewhat of a waste of time as surgeons retire and techniques change.

The issue of providing lubrication to the neovagina has been a difficult one and several approaches have been considered. The problems with the sigmoidal loop technique include requiring two sterile fields, an abdominal intrusion, an extra hour or so under anethesia, extended recovery time, more risk of complication, and greater expense. (Keep in mind that virtually no insurance company pays for expenses related to sexual reassignment; some of us spend years or even decades trying to save up the cash. Christine probably got a discount on her surgery in exchange for being made the subject of a documentary.) But the results are generally better than simple penile inversion (better lubrication, more natural feeling, deeper vagina, lower frequency of strictures, and lower frequency of rectovaginal fistula), so it seems to be the preferred method for those with the cash to pay for it.

Well, I kept getting “operation timed out” which usually means that the connection never opened. Apparently, that’s not what happened. I’ve already asked manhattan to clean up the mess.
[moderator’s note: I cleaned up the multipost and the responses to it. I can’t delete this post just yet, because very bad things happen if you delete the last post in a thread. As soon as another substantive posts appears, I will make this one go bye-bye. -manhattan]**

[Edited by manhattan on 03-06-2001 at 06:34 PM]

Always trust the CGI to grab onto your post, Kelly, even if you get a “timed-out” message. I can remember only one time when the CGI didn’t grab my post, and that was when the phone rang and disconnected me about 1 microsecond after I hit Submit Reply.

And before you assume it hasn’t got your post, and Re-Submit, you can just use the Back button to go back to the Reply window from the “Page Not Found” page. Okay? Then type some nonsense into the Reply window and hit Preview (not Reply). When a thread Previews, it brings up all the posts, upside down and backwards under the Reply window. So you can check and see whether your post is there.

Or you can just reload the thread the usual way.

Anyway–Manny says he wants a “substantive” post. Okay.

Actually, I just came back to to point out to Jarbaby something that occurred to me in the middle of the night–to some people, anal sex (“sodomy”) is a sin, or a crime, or both. So to them, any kind of vaginal sex, even with an artificial vagina, would be preferable.

Thanks Anthracite! Sheesh. You would think a NEWS CHANNEL would try and be a little more thorough, especially since it was an hour DEVOTED to the process. I’m fascinated.

DDG, I thought about this sodomy issue last night as well! Were your ears burning? I do understand the emotional and psychological differences between vaginal and anal sex. It just seemed like an odd surgical procedure when I read it. Anthracite’s link is clearing it all up.


I’ve heard the post-op period is incredibly painful, more so than for most plastic surgery.

I have a tremendous amount of respect for transgendereds, especially the ones who go as far as surgery. To endure all that pain and expense and ostracism just to be what they must, well…it’s braver than most of the rest of us ever have to be, that’s for sure.

Besides, maybe some people just don’t enjoy anal sex.

“It does everything a vagina is supposed to do.” Can there be any higher praise?

Whether or not the patient enjoys sodomy is irrelevant. People who undergo this opeation have strong psychological reasons for wanting it, and won’t be satisfied with less than the best stab available at reproducing the exernal genaltalia as best as possible. The psychological urge is sufficently strong to deal with the complications and pains of the procedure – infection, lubrication, bowel adhesions and so forth.

Wow, you can give birth through your anus? I didn’t know that! Once again, the Straight Dope fights a little ignorance.


Paprika, I realize that. What I was saying by posting my sodomy comment (and I’m sorry that I ever did, because I see now that it was stupid) was that it seemed that they weren’t creating a real vagina complete with self lubrication and clitoris so much as finding something ‘tube like’ to fill in a hole they created. Of course, then I was given links to other sites which were much more thorough and informative…not that DDG WASN’T informative. She was!


God, it’s hard trying not to ruffle any feathers


Believe me, I think transgenders should be given the greatest hoo ha ever, I just wanted to make sure they were sanitary at the same time.


[shaking fist] CURSE YOU TONGUE WAGGING SMILIE! [/shaking fist]

That should read:

:: pause ::

Well, of course. I think we’re all concerned about people’s health. Let’s hope they know what they’re doing.