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Bilateral Orchiectomy with Dr. Kimmel, MD, Philadelphia, PA.

OK...For some, I know that this is an option that they will never consider and I'm fine with this. Perhaps they can stop reading here and go onto the next thread, which I'm fine with as well...grin...We all do what needs must...

The decision to have an orchi can come about for several reasons, some of which are as follows, although I'm certain that there may be a host of others:

1. Side effects from antiandrogens (which they all have)
2. Higher levels of estradiol and progesterones required as long as Beavis and Butthead are in the house.
3. Unable to acquire the funding for SRS/GRS within an acceptable time frame.
4. Other medical issues, such as diabetes, that may compromise one's access to GRS.
5. Better/more effective feminization at lower hormone dosages.
6. Absolutely never having to worry about the primary psychological/emotional/physical attributes of GID ever again.

OK...That's my list and I'm positive that others may have other issues, but let's suffice it to say that this was the criteria that influenced my decision to proceed and I have absolutely no regrets whatsoever in this regard. One thing to note here though, just like GRS, an orchiectomy is irreversible and should not be contemplated unless one is very certain of their resolve and the suitability of the procedure.

The surgeon that I used was Dr. Murray H. Kimmel in Philadelphia, PA. I found him to be a very genial and supportive individual who showed immense concern for both my emotional and physical needs before, during and after the procedure. The price for the procedure was $2000, with a $750 deposit required at the time the surgery was booked. Please note that Dr. Kimmel's office will only accept cash, bank checks or USPS (My preference) money orders for his services - no credit cards or personal checks. The balance of $1,250 was due at the time of the surgery. No letters were required although I did have the blessings of my physician, etc.

Generally speaking, an orchi is an outpatient procedure and is done under local anesthetics with virtually no pain whatsoever and only low levels after the locals wear off. I was able to handle it with a couple doses of ibuprofen (supplied by Dr. Kimmel) and ice packs for the first 48 hours, post op.

I am however, not quite so lucky with the operative pain levels as most are. The reason for this is that I had the unfortunate history of having had a hydrocelectomy in 1994. As a hydrocelectomy requires the the tissues that supply blood plasma and lymphatic fluid to the testes need to be partially disabled, this will destroy the fascia plane of the testes, leaving adhesions and scar tissue along the length of the vas and supportive structures of the testes, which also inhibits the length along these structures where the locals are truly effective. Needless to say, it would be a very good idea to consider going to a different surgeon and having the procedure done under a general anesthesia if you have a history of hydrocelectomy. I underwent a few minutes, on each side, where I experienced some rather severe discomfort until enough of the adhesions and scar tissue was removed, allowing Dr. Kimmel to inject additional anesthesia further up.

Some other concerns if you intend to use Dr. Kimmel:
(Another list!!!)
1. The Best Western, City Center is definitely the place to be. It is one block from the office and easy to walk back to after the procedure.
2. Get the optional refrige and microwave ($20/day) as the local food dispensers are somewhat pricey and not that good, although there is a Whole Foods Market about two blocks away with a very good deli.
3. The Golden Chopsticks, 1800 Spring Garden St., Philadelphia, PA 19130 (215) 496-9190. Delivered Beef Chow Fun, Twice Cooked Pork with Cabbage, 2 egg rolls, and Deluxe Mixed Vegetables with steamed rice and fortune cookies for $25.10 within 1/2 hour of order. The portions were such that my traveling companion and I each got three good meals out of the order. The quality was good.

There is also a Wawa Market (think 711 or U-tote-em), a Domino's Pizza, a high end Japanese Restaurant, Chinese Restaurant, chicken wings place and a deli/market within a block. The hotel restaurant and sports bar are a bit pricey, but good from all accounts.

My post operative antibiotics and a 2oz. bottle of of Betadine were ordered by Dr. Kimmel and delivered to my hotel room by the Philadelphia Pharmacy within 2 hours of leaving his office for an additional $16.50. I spent the rest of the day Friday, all day Saturday and Sunday until noon in bed with my hoo-haws packed in ice to keep the post operative swelling down. The television programs really sucked so I read a lot and listened to the local smooth jazz station (very much like KKSF here in the Bay Area).

Right now, I am healing with no complications and everything is going to plan. I will be off estradiol and my low-dose aspirin for another 2 to 4 weeks and the headaches (mild, from estradiol cessation) and hot flashes are the worse symptoms to date. I had the sutures removed today and that is a major relief! (Like walking around with some sewing needles in one's panties! Definitely got my attention at times!) No bike riding for at least another two to three weeks, but I am doing some walking to keep the muscle tone in my legs and generally taking it easy. I am playing the heck out of my penny whistles which also tends to keep the cats out of my lap as well!

Ahhh...Life is good!
Joanie

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