Every now and then I read or hear a news story in which a so called ‘cutter’ is arrested for performing a castration surgery even though he is really not a doctor. These arrests often occur immediately after a castration surgery on one of his clients goes awry. I also hear of persons who tried to castrate themselves, and then needed expensive treatment. Very often the client was in desperation and was willing to obtain his or her orchiectomy at all costs, even if the price turns out to be one’s own life.
But does this surgery really have to cost everything?
Why should only a doctor perform this surgery?
Any type of surgery needs to be performed by only a qualified doctor. There are many things that can easily go wrong with any surgery, and a competent doctor can work to keep the risks of surgery to a very small minimum.
Cutting deep into any area of the body is going to rupture some blood vessels and cause bleeding. The genitals in particular have many blood vessels, and one false move by any surgeon or non-professional cutter will cause dangerous bleeding. A surgeon is trained to minimize this risk, but a cutter is not. Most people who attempt do-it-yourself castration have no medical training. Once you start bleeding heavily, you may rapidly go into shock, and find out that simply lifting the phone to call 911 may be very difficult or impossible. You might not be able to obtain treatment, or help may arrive too late to prevent your death from hemorrhage.
If you do survive the blood loss, you face extreme risk of infection. Any serious wound in the genital area is very likely to become infected. Again, a licensed doctor can perform your orchiectomy while taking sanitary measures to reduce the risk of infection. The doctor who performed my castration also instructed me to start taking Cipro antibiotics starting two days pre-surgery through the fifth day after. Cutters tend to perform their castrations in less sanitary conditions such as their own homes or motel rooms. Some persons who were castrated by cutters or tried to do it themselves developed infection even after seeking treatment for hemorrhage.
Another thing to consider is pain control. A doctor will at the very least administer a local anesthetic to numb the area. This is necessary for the castration surgery, because that area of the body is particularly sensitive, and the extreme pain may put you in shock even before blood loss does. Those who have cutters perform castration tend to report more pain during their procedure.
Even with non-invasive methods such as crushing testicles inside the scrotum, you would still suffer severe internal bleeding and require emergency treatment. I’ve read about one person who injected acid into his testicles to cause castration, and he also caused life-threatening infection and gangrene. There is no safe do-it-yourself method of castration.
Who are cutters?
Cutters are actually non-medical persons who perform castrations and possibly other surgeries on consenting but often desperate clients. They do not have medical training, and they cannot perform the procedure as safely as a competent physician could. Sooner or later one of their clients suffers excessive bleeding or another complication that requires emergency treatment, and then the local authorities arrest the cutter.
Pain control is less reliable than with a licensed surgeon, and there is greater risk of potentially deadly complications. Going to a cutter is not a safe alternative to going to a physician.
But I don’t have the money for Dr. Kimmel or any other doctor, and it’s too far to travel. Wouldn’t it be cheaper to castrate myself?
You will not save money by do-it-yourself castration, and will probably pay much more!
One of the common reasons that persons try to perform castration on themselves is because they believe they would never have the funds for going to a doctor. Dr. Kimmel in Philadelphia charges $2000 but requires no therapist letter. Several surgeons will perform orchiectomies for transsexuals who are transitioning and receiving HRT. When travel and boarding costs are added, even if you are a non-transgendered male, you should be able to obtain a safe orchiectomy by a competent physician for around $2500. But if you try to do it yourself…
The ambulance ride alone would cost you hundreds of dollars. Even if a friend or relative takes you there, you will owe many thousands in hospital bills. Most of those who try to castrate themselves end up being admitted to the hospital for multiple days while the doctors deal with severe bleeding and often infection. Hospital expenses easily exceed $1000 per day. Insurance policies typically exclude coverage for self-inflicted injuries ‘whether sane or insane’. If you survive the experience, you will pay much more for do-it-yourself castration than if you had gone to a licensed physician.
Do-it-yourself castration will cost you more than just money
Attempting to castrate yourself or having an unlicensed cutter do it may even cost you the ultimate price: your life. Wouldn’t you prefer to continue living after your castration so you can experience the serenity of no testosterone?
In addition to the high monetary cost and the risk of your life, you will also have to face the embarrassment of explaining to the doctors and nurses. Chances are, you will meet doctors and nurses who are not so open minded about this, and you may even face ridicule. You might end up having to disclose this to relatives and friends.
Several times a year I hear of a news story about a cutter being arrested after a recent client of his developed life threatening complications, and very often the client is also mentioned in the same news story. Would you want yourself and your motives disclosed to the media? Some transsexuals have been outed this way.
Another thing I want you to consider is that the medical staff at the hospital where you seek treatment will likely try to reattach your testicles if you have succeeded in severing them from your body. Many of those who attempt do-it-yourself castration fail, either because they inflicted life-threatening trauma on themselves before they detached both testicles, or because those doctors who provided emergency treatment managed to reattach their testicles. You might fail to castrate yourself, yet still have to pay thousands of dollars and all the non-monetary costs for treatment of your attempt, meaning that all your pain and efforts got you nowhere. Then the only things you might gain are hospital bills and a lot of embarrassment.
Money is not the real issue. I wish to be castrated a certain way.
I notice that some people who seek castration wish to have it done in a certain manner, such as by a woman, or done in some sort of scene, and place little or no emphasis on their life after castration. If you have merely thought about how you want to be castrated, and have not thought about your life after castration, then you seriously need to reconsider why you seek castration, and what long term benefits you would gain from the procedure. The castration procedure will be so brief, yet the aftereffects of it will remain for the rest of your life. Castration is so much more than merely removing testicles from the body. This results in profound changes in sexuality, emotions, and your overall life. Please read my Castration Effects page as well as my Castration Factors page and seriously consider what your life will be like without testosterone or fertility.
But I heard about somebody who went to Dr. Xxxxx for castration, and yet they almost died from complications. Is it really safer to go to a licensed surgeon?
The risks of orchiectomy or any other surgery will never be absolutely zero. Even the best doctors will have a very small rate of complications.
I am a transitioned woman who has not yet had her SRS but is now investigating all her options, so lately I have read accounts from many women who recently had SRS surgery with various surgeons. While most of the reports have been positive, and some of them overwhelmingly so, I have also read some very negative reports from patients who suffered complications after having surgery by almost every SRS surgeon on the planet. Even the most reputable surgeons in North America have had a very few patients die shortly after their surgery. If the surgeon is competent, his or her complication rate will be much lower than that of unlicensed cutters or the person who tries to do surgery to themselves, so the licensed surgeon remains the safest option for any surgery.
One thing you will need to consider is if the benefits you would obtain from castration or any other surgery are worth taking the very small risks of complications. I would not reject any surgeon just because one patient died in his hospital, particularly if that patient was a smoker or already had a health condition that they tried to conceal from the surgeon. Some surgeons have had their reputations unfairly tarnished because a patient was already committing risky behavior or did not follow the surgeon’s instructions. If a particular surgeon seemed to have a greater rate of complications than other surgeons, then I would hesitate to use such a surgeon. Every surgeon has at least a few dissatisfied patients, the question is whether that surgeon has an unusually high number of unhappy patients. If one surgeon seems to you to be incompetent, then seek another.
When you see a surgeon for castration, or for any surgery, you need to work with your surgeon to reduce the risk of complications. Your surgeon may instruct you to take antibiotics, or to rest for a certain amount of time before returning to work. Following the instructions of your doctor will greatly reduce the risks of post-surgery complications, particularly of infection. In addition, factors such as smoking or excess weight may increase the likelihood of complications, any you can increase your chances of a successful surgery by not smoking, or quitting smoking and maintaining a healthy weight.
I live in the city of Xxxxx. Is there anybody here who would perform my orchiectomy?
Depending on where you live, you may have to travel some distance to obtain your orchiectomy. I traveled from Fayetteville Arkansas to Philadelphia Pennsylvania to obtain my own orchiectomy. Obtaining your dreams and the improved quality of your life will take some effort, and part of that effort is travel. I traveled all the way to Thailand so I could obtain a safe and affordable vaginoplasty.
However, even if you don’t live in Philadelphia, you might not have to travel far. Most doctors won’t perform orchiectomy on a healthy male, but once in a while somebody gets lucky and finds the right surgeon. Transsexuals who are transitioning seem to have more options for surgeons, since a very few doctors would perform orchiectomy on someone who has a therapist letter and has already been on HRT for a while. There are two possible ways that some patients have found a doctor near their home.
One very good friend of mine tried these methods and found a surgeon to perform her orchiectomy in the city I currently reside in.
Many persons from all over the USA, Canada, and outside the USA have E-Mailed me asking if I knew of a surgeon in their area. If I have not listed any surgeons in your city on my Castration surgeons webpage, that means that I either don’t know of anyone in your area, or there might be a doctor there who does not wish to have his or her name disclosed on any internet site.
In the days before the internet, when I didn’t know of any doctors who would be willing to perform orchiectomy, I often thought about trying to remove the unwanted parts myself. When I had my surgery in 1999, Dr. Spector was the only surgeon that I knew of who would do this surgery. During the past several years, I have become aware of a few more doctors who would be willing to perform orchiectomy for those of us who are making the transition from male to female, but unfortunately options remain limited for non-transgendered men who would simply live an improved life without testosterone. It is my hope that doctors will be more understanding, and that there will be more surgeons who would provide a safe orchiectomy for all persons (both transitioning and not transitioning) who would benefit from this surgery and have an improved quality of life.