Watch the future of gender reassignment surgery.

A video posted by the European Society of Urology is gaining traction online thanks to its graphic step-by-step animation of the complex procedure involved in turning a penis into a vagina, an increasingly popular procedure in the transgender community.

The five-minute animation is not for the faint-hearted – it shows a surgeon opening the scrotum and removing the testicles and head of the penis to expose nerve endings in order to form a clitoris. The remaining penis shaft and scrotum are then transformed to generate a vaginal canal and labia.

The reshaping of the genitals allows transgender women to have the appearance and function of a normal vagina, including allowing for penetrative sexual intercourse.

Patients undergoing a drastic procedure like this have typically already undergone extensive psychological testing and hormone replacement therapy.

The animation has been hailed as a critical tool to help the wider population understand the gruelling physical journey often involved in being a transgender person. Although people from around the world who identify as transgender are still alienated, attacked and condemned, studies show genital reassignment surgery has an overwhelming affect on a transgender person’s wellbeing.

Research conducted by Essen University Hospital’s Department of Urology found over 90 per cent of patients who had undergone male-to-female gender reassignment surgery felt more at ease with themselves and expressed they felt their expectations had been fulfilled.

Unfortunately, female-to-male gender reassignment surgery isn’t as simple a process, though in recent months there has been some exciting progress.

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore has given its doctors permission to trial up to 60 penis transplants on wounded soldiers who were injured during their time spent in Iraq and Afghanistan, and although the trials are not available to transgender men, doctors remain hopeful they will one day become a standard part of female-to-male gender reassignment surgery.

“Once this becomes public and there’s some sense that this is successful and a good therapy, there will be all sorts of questions about whether [we’ll] do it for gender reassignment,” says Johns Hopkins bioethicist, Dr. Jeffery Kahn.

Video via vimeo.com.

Comment: What are your thoughts on the animation of sex reassignment surgery?