Uniquely Devastating Genital Injuries Among Troops

When we think of the lasting effects war has on our troops, psychological sequelae such as PTSD and major trauma like the loss of limbs frequently come to mind. A recent study has shed light on how war can impact fertility and sexual health in our service members. 1,367 troops had injuries to their genitals during the Iraq and Afghanistan war from 2001 to 2013, with 94% of the victims being 35 or younger. As a result, many have lost the ability to parent and raise a child of their own. Programs and novel forms of treatment are underway to help those affected. To date, only one penis transplant has been successfully performed, but there are currently a few troops on a transplant waiting list. For those who are no longer able to produce sperm, options are limited. Sperm donor programs are currently not a covered benefit for service members. However, the Pentagon recently started a pilot program for sperm and egg freezing to give young service members peace of mind, an increasingly popular practice among career driven women. Another solution is to collect sperm from soldiers immediately after being injured in the field, as is protocol for British military surgeons.

Article: Study Maps ‘Uniquely Devastating’ Genital Injuries Among Troops