SRS by Dr. Preecha Tiewtranon in Bangkok

SRS by Dr. Preecha Tiewtranon in Bangkok

SRS by Dr. Preecha Tiewtranon in Bangkok

SRS by Dr. Preecha Tiewtranon in Bangkok

This is the diary of my trip to Thailand, a land of beautiful people.

By Olivia

Introduction

Originally, I was referred by Dr. Russell Reid, and Dr Dalrymple, to have my SRS with Dr. Timothy Terry at Leicester Nuffield Hospital .

I asked my GP to enquire about me getting NHS funding but, after waiting 4 months, was told that Cornwall AHA funded two patients per year, there was a waiting list of ten, and then only through Charring Cross.   I knew that a delay of at least 5 years would mean I would be too old for SRS at 71yrs!

I had heard enough about Charing Cross to realize that paying for my surgery was the only way.  So I set the wheels in motion to have the operation at Leicester Nuffield, and made two journeys there from Cornwall to have consultations with Dr. Terry.   I knew that my finances were going to be stretched to the limit just for the surgery.  I still had to sort out my aftercare, because living on my own I knew I would have problems in coping with everyday shopping, cooking etc.  I might have to consider two weeks in nursing home!

It was later, when Leicester Nuffield said that because of my age and medical condition (I’d had a stroke eleven years ago) that I would be charged an extra £1,000 for special care that I knew I couldn’t afford to got to Leicester .

Since my very dear friend Terri Fowler was scheduled to have her SRS with Dr. Suporn in Chonburi , Thailand in June, I decided to go the same route, providing her reports were encouraging.  The e-mails I received from her whilst there, and the conversations we had on her return, convinced me that this was the correct route for me.

It became apparent that I could fly to Bangkok, have SRS from one of the leading surgeons in the world, 5 days in hospital and a 21 day stay in an air-conditioned hotel, with nurse visiting daily to deal with medication, personal needs etc, then a week of sight seeing round Thailand, fly back home again, all for just over £5,000….. £1,200 less than SRS at Leicester Nuffield!!!

My mind was made up.

Chonburi

I flew to Thailand , on 21st August 2001 on a non-stop flight of 12 hours, with Thai-Air International.   Perhaps not the cheapest airline but, having heard stories about some of the other companies such as Aeroflot, I felt safe and confident with them.

I was scheduled to see Dr Suporn Watanakusal.   We landed at Bangkok on time and I was met there by a member of hospital staff and driven straight to Aikchol Hospital , Chonburi.  On arriving, I was escorted through all the blood tests, ECG, BP, X-ray etc by Minda, the lovely head nurse who speaks perfect English.

I had a brief meeting with Dr. Suporn and was then taken to my room.

Shortly afterwards, Minda, Dr. Suporn’s wife Aoi, and the Anesthetist came into the room.  Not good news!

Because of my age of 66yrs, my medical condition, and having had a stroke in 1990, Dr. Suporn, his team felt that the facilities, especially an intensive care bed, were not good enough at Aikchol Hospital and so he decided to refer me to Dr Preecha in Bangkok.   They telephoned straightaway, and I was able to speak to Dr. Preecha in person.   An appointment was arranged for the next day so I stayed one night in Aikchol Hospital as a guest.

Back to Bangkok

It was Dr. Preecha who taught Dr. Suporn and Dr. Sanguan of Phuket.    I was a bit nervous about meeting the master himself, but I needn’t have worried.  When I met him at the Chollada Clinic on Wednesday, he looked at my notes and test results and said “No problem, I will give you SRS on Saturday.  I will charge you the same as Dr Suporn (£4,200)”.   I was then taken to a nearby hotel by Eddie.  Eddie Chaichana is a delightful young man who is a registered nurse/manager/secretary of the clinic and looks after all TS patients from leaving hospital until departing Bangkok .  He not only deals with medication and “personal” needs but will also accompany us on shopping trips and arrange sight-seeing tours.  He also speaks near perfect English!

The next two days I was able to meet and chat with four American post-ops who were almost due to return to the US .

I was told not to eat anything and only drink water after 9pm on Friday.  At 10am on Saturday, I was put in a taxi and taken to the Piyavate Hospital in Bangkok . After being checked in and shown to my room, the nurse said “get into bed straightaway and take this pill, since you are going into the operating theatre in 30 minutes”!

I remember them wheeling me down a corridor and into the lift and then I awoke back in my room.

I think I asked the nurse if I’d had the surgery and she nodded.  A couple of pills and I was asleep for the night, waking up at 6 o’clock Sunday morning.

The Morning After

Awoke at 7.30am , just as nurse came in to give me some pills (painkillers and antibiotics I guess).

As soon as she had gone, a different nurse came in with a breakfast of cereal, bread and jam and a sort of fruit salad.  I remembered to get her to take a photograph of “Olivia” the new woman!

I had just about finished breakfast when three nurses’ came in to give me a bed bath.  Mmmm, this is quite pleasant, and I was now able to do a bit of investigating. I had no aches or Pain.   The surgery site and “pack” had been covered with wadding and then secured with very wide adhesive tape, from about 5”inches below belly-button round to almost level with the anus (this made doing pooh possible but messy!)

There was a catheter and small drain tube, coming out near my left leg, leading to two bags under the bed.  I felt remarkably relaxed, without any internal pains or problems at all. There was no anesthetic drip at all and I didn’t need one anyway.

“To bathroom and clean teeth”.

“What” I couldn’t believe it.  “are you sure”.   “Yes, yes, is OK.  Come, we help”

With a nurse each side, and the third carrying my ‘handbags’, they had me out of bed and shuffling to the en-suite bathroom.

I later got a copy of the operation report which showed I had been under anesthetic, for exactly two and a half hours, until two-thirty.  I had surfaced, back in my room, at about six pm .

This meant that I was standing up in the bathroom just EIGHTEEN HOURS AFTER COMING OUT OF THE OPERATING THEATRE.

The only Pain

“Better if stay out of bed.  Sit on a ring (air-cushion) on chair”

As soon as I tried to sit down, I felt it…. aarrgghh.!!!!!!

The last night at the hotel, Eddie had suggested that, to save time, I shave the complete area within the bikini line and groin.   I had already had electrolysis on the length of the penis, 6 weeks previously.  So I set to with the razor, but, to my horror I now realized that I had missed a few hairs right inside the groin. These were now securely attached to the sticking plaster holding the surgery dressing in place.

When I tried to sit down, it was agony.  They were unreachable, and so I spent the next three days either lying on the bed sleeping or watching Thai TV, or standing up eating , wandering around my room, or along corridors past the nurses station “Good exercise for you”.  I winced and half-smiled back.  Then I got diarrhea.  What a mess, with the dressing covering half my bum, it tended to spray upwards!

I wasn’t getting on at all well with Thai food at that time. It is often rather salty or very sweet, or oily and very hot and spicy.  I was only eating the odd piece of bread and jam and a lot of the bowls of assorted fruit.

On the third day, I was a bit tearful.  I suppose it was a mixture of not eating well, nagging pain from the hairs in my groin, anxiety of what was to come and few of the nurses spoke good enough English to understand my many questions.

In the afternoon, Dr Preecha came in to tell me “Pack out tomorrow”   Within half an hour of his visit, a girl came in with a dish of french fries, a large ham/salad sandwich, small packet of biscuits and a glass of orange juice!.

The Pack is Out

I didn’t sleep well that night.  The nurse gave me a sleeping pill at 10pm , a pain killer at 1am and another sleeping pill at 3am .  I awoke at 7am soaked in perspiration.  I was anxious about pains when the pack was being removed.  One of the older nurses came in and, speaking a bit better English, managed to calm me down a bit.  She suggested that I should gradually free the edges of the dressing myself during the day, ready for when the doctor came.  This I started to do and, in three hours I had managed to free three quarters of the way round.   That plaster had really welded itself to my skin and I dreaded even touching it in my groin  It was only then that I remembered that I had a miniature pair of scissors on a small penknife I carry in my handbag.

Eureka !!!   They were small enough, and sharp enough so that I could, very very gradually, snip through all the hairs stuck to the plaster.  Sweet relief at last.

It is now 5pm and in comes a rather attractive young doctor with an adoring retinue of six young and extremely beautiful nurses.   I am soon spread-eagled, naked on the bed.   As he carefully removes the ‘already feed round the edges’ plaster and wadding he says   “I am Dr. Preecha’s assistant…….mmmmm……good..…yes…..I take pack out now”     It looks like and feels like he is gently pulling a two meter long bead necklace from between my legs. No pain at all, just a strange sensation  “Good……..very little bleeding………you will have depth of five inches…….I go to England for the football”……. the nurses all smile and sigh.    There are one or two other strange internal sensations but no pain at all, and then they all go out of the room.

I am left still lying there, legs wide open, looking up at the ceiling, wondering what is going to happen next.  I wait for ages (probably about 2 minutes) and then start to gingerly explore my new equipment.  It all feels extremely tender and sensitive but I know for sure that there are no male bits down there now.

So there I am, still lying flat on my back, gently exploring the new excavations when I suddenly get the urge to ‘pee’.    I hadn’t had that feeling since before the op.   Strange. I wonder perhaps there’s a kink in the catheter stopping the flow………something is wrong…….there’s a wet and warm feeling round my bum………Bloody hell, when they took the pack out they took the catheter and drain out as well, and never told me!!!!!!!!!!”  (not in English anyway)

There is now a large wet patch on the bed, so I clench the muscles and ring the bell.   Within seconds, three nurses come in, see the problem and quickly have me sat on the loo.   I’m expecting half my inside to plop out into the pan!   Nothing happens for a while and then I feel something dribbling down towards my anus.  Yippee!   I’m weeing like a woman.  While I was in the loo, the nurses completely changed all my bedding.

Three hours later, I sit on the pan and some of the wee goes straight into the water.  The rest dribbles like a badly designed teapot.    I am still not allowed to have a shower until the morning, but as a treat, I get french fries and tomato ketchup for supper.

A bit of a restless night as everything is still extremely tender, and a bit sore, but nothing I would call painful.  I was getting antibiotic injections and painkiller tablets, which seemed to be taking care of everything internally.

“ You discharge today!”

At 6 am , a nurse comes in, removes the needle from back of my hand and says ”you discharge to hotel now”

By 9 am I was in a taxi heading for the Sara Hotel , just round the corner from where Dr. Preecha’s Chollada Clinic is located.

Eddie, Dr. Preecha’s  head nurse, office manager, and coordinator, brought pain killers, Betadiene (half litre bottle!!!!!) and various other bits and pieces of equipment I would need., After unpacking the suitcase again, sorting out my laundry, eating a Thai salad in the little café downstairs, I watched a bit of BBC World TV and went to bed with a pain killer, just in case.

The next three days I was incapable of rational thought due, I found out later, to the pain killers I was regularly taking,  didn’t really need, and four different types of antibiotics.  The painkillers were so powerful that they caused hallucinations.   After some of the weirdest dreams one could ever imagine, I eventually surfaced on Sunday around tea time, and gradually realised that I felt soooo different.  Almost human in fact.    I had come through the storm and landed on paradise island !!

That evening, Eddie called in to show me how to dilate and douche properly  I slept peacefully that night..

Monday morning

My instructions were to dilate twice a day for 15 minutes each time.   This should be for 6 months, and then once a day for the following 6 months.  I could entertain a sexual partner after 2 months. (in your dreams, Olly)   I came to refer to this routine as the 5D’s

Dilating with shaped domestic candle, Douching with rubber bulb, Drenching everything in the shower, Dabbing betadene all round the operation site and Dusting with antibiotic powder.

In the afternoon it rained and I decided to stay in and write down how I felt during those first 3 days at the hotel…………..

………..That first night out of hospital, I feel as if a little part of my brain kicked in an emergency life support system to keep vital parts going.  Another part started to sort out the tangled feelings and signals that were coming in or missing altogether.  The rest of my brain seemed to go into free-fall.  I had really weird dreams, caused by the potent painkillers that were keeping things painless ‘down there’, but the bit of the brain sorting out the nerve system didn’t know that.  Consequently for 48 hours, I felt waves of ………sort of light pin-pricks and twinges, every few minutes, somewhere internally, rather than real aches or pains.

Apparently these sensations are generated in the brain as the nerves re-connect, and didn’t come from the surgery site at all.   Weird.

I awoke at 7 am on Monday morning and felt quite different both mentally and physically.

I felt better!!!!!!!!!

I even decided to have a shave.

Yes I was going to be fine. I could treat the next 16 days as almost a holiday, and Bangkok is a shopper’s paradise!!!!!!!!!!!!

What I did for the next ten days i.e.: – the tours, the shopping, meeting Kie and Kimji, entertainment, well that’s another story.

Conclusion

I am now more than 2 months post-op.  I still follow Dr Preecha’s instructions re hygiene with dilating and douching (although I now use a jug/tube/nozzle douching kit), I still have 5 inches depth and have never had any infections.   I did have a tiny split near the clitoris but that is almost cleared now with some steroid cream from my GP.

I would say that Dr. Preecha is as good as any and better than most and anybody that may be worried that anesthetic, is a really bad risk then he is your man.   How he does what he does in two and a half hours when other surgeons take five hours plus, I’ll never know.   I was at the Piyavate Hospital in Bangkok , as modern and well equipped as any in the world in my opinion, where there sometimes seemed to be more nurses than patients.

I found all the Thai people in general were polite, kind, patient and good humoured

I look forward to returning there one day.

Olivia   9.11.2001

News & Updated

Lecture symposium @ University of Zurich hospital
Lecture symposium @ University of Zurich hospital

Lecture symposium. University of Zurich Hospital Surgery Department. Performing  Facial Feminization Surgery with U of Zurich hospital Plastic surgery Department team and Speaker for Sex Reassignment Surgery with 40 years experience. Date: April 2016.       

Geschlechtsangleichung in Thailand
Geschlechtsangleichung in Thailand

Ein Faktor gelungener Operation ist die Erregbarkeit Eine Operation gilt als gelungen, wenn sie drei Dinge erreicht: ausreichende Tiefe, gerne auch Feuchtigkeit für die sexuelle Funktion; Erregbarkeit für das Lustempfinden; und ein gutes optisches Erscheinungsbild. “Wenn sie sehr jung sind, wollen sie alles: Erregung, gutes Aussehen, und die Tiefe für die sexuelle Funktion. Je älter […]

the best gender reassignment surgeon in Asia
the best gender reassignment surgeon in Asia

VANITY FAIR Italy Magazine Dear Dr.Preecha, Preecha Aesthetic Institute Milan, the 9th of February 2016 We are working on a story about how Bangkok became a global gender change destination and while researching the story we realized that you, sir, with your pioneer work, are on of the main protagonists of this story. So it […]

How Thailand Became a Global Gender-Change Destination
How Thailand Became a Global Gender-Change Destination

October 27, 2015 By: Jason Gale (Bloomberg) Preecha, who performed Thailand’s first gender surgery in 1975, attributes the country’s popularity for the procedure to three things: “No. 1, it’s very cheap in Thailand,” he says. “No. 2, good result, and No. 3, good hospitality — they can have a side trip for tourism.” Read full […]

View all updates

TESTIMONIALS

View all testimonials

Good afternoon Dr Sutin its very nice to hear from you again thank you for writing to me. I have the photo on my desk of me and Dr Sutin and des my carrer who is my husband now thanks to Dr Sutin . I like to keep in touch if I may I like […]