Every year, about 8,400 men go under the knife to get a larger penis.
This number does not account for the men who get penis elongation surgeries, since the two procedures (enlargement and elongation) are often performed at the same time — despite expert recommendations that they be done weeks apart.
Now, men might be more inclined to listen, since the dual operation has claimed its first fatal victim: an otherwise healthy 30-year-old Swede.
“This is the first described case where a seemingly simple and safe procedure of penis enlargement by autologous fat transfer caused sudden death in a healthy young man,” the study, published in the Journal of Forensic Sciences, reported.
The patient had undergone both kinds of penis-enhancement procedures at once, with doctors removing fat from his stomach and putting it…lower down.
If you’re not grossed out yet, this involves cutting a hole to loosen a ligament at the base of the penis and then pumping in two ounces of liquid cells, as seen in the helpful video above (which is obviously not safe for work, unless you work at All That Is Interesting).
This injection process was going as well as one could hope when the man’s heart started racing and his blood pressure plummeted.
He soon had a heart attack and was dead within two hours. Doctors later concluded that the fat that had loosened in the surgery traveled up through punctured veins and into the lungs. It then popped blood vessels there, which caused a lung embolism.
A similar issue resulted from at least 13 butt lifts in Mexico, according to a 2015 study.
Though the unnamed victim was the first known to have actually died from the operation, others have experienced pretty horrendous side effects.
“It’s a completely useless procedure that never works and disfigures men, and could kill you,” Tobias Kohler, a urologist who was not part of the study, told BuzzFeed News. “This is the worst case, but there are lots of other horrible consequences, from disfigurement to permanent erectile disfunction to even worse.”
It’s a big risk to take for a practice that is — for the majority of patients — undertaken for purely cosmetic purposes.
“The majority of men seeking penile elongation treatment have a normal penile size, which is functionally adequate,” the 2015 study clarified. Though many of them experience a kind of body dysmorphic disorder that makes them unable to see their penises for the perfectly fine sex organs they are.
“If you end up with something that nobody recognizes as a penis, that is what we call sub-optimal,” Kohler said of the procedure, which an increasing number of men are getting each year.
Both this and death are decidedly worse than learning to love your average-sized penis. (Which, for the record, is 5.6 inches.)
Next, read up on the recent developments in penis transplant surgery.