Testicle Implants

Testicle Implants

After losing a testicle (or two), due to cancer, infection, injury or torsion, do you consider getting testicle implants?  What if you are a trans-man?  According to our documentary subjects, the opinions vary and are split down the middle.

To replace, or not to replace.  This is the question.
 
In the case of Matt Perry, who lost his testicle to testicular torsion, he has no interest in replacing the excided ball with a testicle implants.  Now in his fifties, Matt had his ball removed in his early twenties because the twisted testicle had cut off all blood supply to his left nut rendering it dead.  Not only is testicular torsion a medical emergency but it is also very difficult to diagnose.  If the diagnosis and “un-twisting” is not made within the first 8 hours, the testicle will likely be lost.  

Matt’s trauma of undergoing an orchiectomy over 25 years ago is so great, that the thought of having to undergo surgery once again to have testicle implants is even further traumatizing. Besides, he is much older now and in a long-term committed relationship with a partner who is comfortable and supportive of Matt’s body.  Matt jokes, “If you could click your fingers and have testicle implants with no effort required, I would probably do that”. Sadly, it is not that simple.
 

Siavash, on the other hand, who also lost a testicle to torsion in more recent years, is definitely considering re-balancing his body with testicle implants.  As a younger man in his late twenties, he would like his body to look more symmetrical.  At the moment, he is researching clinics and doctors.
 
For Peter Bovolaneas, who lost both testicles to cancer, it was a no brainer.  He was thankful for the modern day medical technology and elected to get 2 prosthetic testicle implants.  Peter is a remarkable human being who has such a great sense of humor and amazing coping skills.

Sometimes when he is out at the bars, he will approach acquaintances (who do not know his testicular history) and ask them to flick his balls.  If he doesn’t flinch, they buy him a drink; if Peter flinches, he buys the drink.  It’s a win-win situation for tipsy Peter, leaving the “flicker” scratching his or her head.  

It should also be noted that Peter, who presents as a VERY masculine/muscular man, can no longer produce testosterone because both testicles were removed due to cancer. Because of this fact, Peter must inject himself with testosterone every 2 weeks to maintain sex drive, bone mass, muscle mass and mental health.  He humorously accepts this shot in the buttocks as his “pain in the ass”.

Peter takes testosterone because without biologically intact testicles, as a man he needs it.  This is different than when men with functioning testicles take testosterone for purely aesthetic reasons.

The decision to get testicle implants after the required removal of one or both balls really comes down to choice and comfort.  And as Maggie Cassella jokes, “I’m not going to judge a guy for getting a fake ball any more than I’m going to judge a woman for getting a fake boob. It’s your choice and we have the technology!”

testicle implants sizingDifferent sizes of testicle implants are measured against the patient’s real testicles to get as close a match as possible.
 testicle-implants-sizing-indianapolis-dr-barry-eppley
There are different types of prosthetic testicle implants.  The ultimate goal is to match the prosthetic as much as possible to the remaining, natural testicle.  Testicular prostheses are made of silicone gel or saline (salt water) with a silicone rubber covering.  The surgeon makes a small incision in the lower groin where the prosthesis is inserted and then placed in the empty scrotum and secured with a stitch, or suture. You can usually go home the same day of the surgery.  Often testicular prosthesis surgery can be done at the same time as the orchiectomy, or during a later surgery.  It all depends on what the patient wants.

As a trans-man, Carey is not interested in getting prosthetic testicle implants.  His genitals do not define his masculinity, though he jokingly claims to have “psychic balls”.  Interestingly enough, once Carey started to take testosterone, his genitals started to change.  His clitoris and labia started to grow, so much so that he often feels as though he has a penis and balls.

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Balls – avec le réalisateur Nico Stagias

Nico Stagias - Director of Photography

Nico Stagias est le réalisateur du BALLS.

I’m a StripperStudlebrity.  Bump!  Positive YouthI’m a PornstarBalls. Tous des titres de films auxquels Nico Stagias a contribué. Que ce soit en tant que réalisateur, monteur ou cinématographe, il est toujours dans son élément. Alliez ses vastes talents à ceux du tout autant talentueux Charlie David, et vous avez là toute une paire… jeu de mots inclus.

 

Nico Stagias raconte qu’il a une longue et belle histoire de travail avec Charlie David. Après s’être rencontrés sur le plateau de la série de voyage « Bump! », ils se sont tout de suite liés d’amitié avant de passer quatre saisons à filmer cette émission. « Une série de voyage est définitivement un bon indicateur de compatibilité sur un plateau. Nous aimons tous les deux voyager et découvrir le monde par nous-mêmes. »

 

« Balls », a été initialement pensé par Patrick Ware, le partenaire de vie de Charlie David, en 2014. Lorsque Charlie David a partagé l’idée avec Nico Stagias, ce dernier a tout de suite était conquis. « Nous travaillons habituellement à deux et partageons toutes les responsabilités (outre la caméra), de la pré- à la post-production. Nous faisons une excellente équipe. Pour ce qui est de « Balls », le père de Charlie est décédé subitement. Sans une once d’hésitation, il a pris le premier avion pour la Saskatchewan et y est resté un mois pour s’assurer que sa famille allait bien. C’est ce que j’adore de Charlie et la raison pour laquelle nous nous entendons si bien. Il a le sens des priorités.»

 

REGARD Balls ici:

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Après la fin de Bump!, Nico Stagias et Charlie David savaient qu’ils souhaitaient continuer à voir le monde à travers leur vision commune. « Notre premier projet ensemble a été «Positive Youth », un documentaire sur les taux accrus d’infection au VIH chez les jeunes d’Amérique du Nord. Depuis, nous avons eu notre juste part de documentaires sur des strip-teaseurs, des beaux gosses et des vedettes du porno. »

 

Durant des études de langues et de littérature au collège Dawson, Nico Stagias a pris un cours complémentaire sur l’histoire du cinéma et a immédiatement su qu’il voulait faire partie de ce monde. « J’ai eu des tonnes de boulots liés aux films et aux vidéos, de coupeur de négatifs (du temps où les films étaient captés sur celluloïd) jusqu’à monter les nouvelles matinales pour Global Television. Mes premiers contrats de tournage, de montage et de réalisation étaient des collaborations avec le monde de la danse moderne. Il n’y a rien de tel que l’expérience de lier la forme d’art cinétique de la danse à la forme d’art du film. Jusqu’à ce jour, je garde un faible pour les vidéos de danse. »

 

Quand il s’agit du sujet de leurs projets de collaboration, les deux talents ont tendance à suivre leurs intérêts. « Puisque nous vendons nos documentaires à des chaînes de télévision, nous essayons de trouver la bonne combinaison pour la station à laquelle nous nous adressons. Bien souvent, nous trouvons preneur pour les titres plus accrocheurs et provocants. » Très motivé par la facette queer en tant que culture opprimée, Nico Stagias considère qu’il est important d’explorer les différentes voix de l’expérience queer. « Nous avons beau avoir le mariage gai au Canada depuis 16 ans, nous souffrons encore d’homophobie manifeste, surtout lorsqu’on parle de questions trans et de la stigmatisation liée au VIH, notamment chez les minorités queer visibles. »

 

Quand il vient en arrive à ses influences personnelles, il dit être est inspiré par les gens queer de son coin, récemment attiré par l’histoire d’Everett Klippert, un homme de la Saskatchewan qui, en 1965, a été condamné à la prison à vie parce qu’il était homosexuel. Le gouvernement libéral actuel essaie de faire des réparations aux hommes comme lui et à leurs familles. « C’est une partie importante et fascinante de notre histoire queer canadienne. »

 

Nico Stagias espère que le public appréciera les projections de « Balls » à Never Apart. Instructif et, à certains égards, un documentaire sérieux, la santé testiculaire n’est pas toujours matière à rire. « Il est important de ne pas oublier le côté léger de toutes choses. J’espère que l’audience en ressortira plus sensibilisée face aux testicules et que les testicules sont beaux, que vous en ayez, en aviez ou ne vous en serviez pas du tout. Aimez vos couilles et les couilles des autres. »

 

 Written by Mikela Jay for NeverApart.com
 
 
 

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Balls Documentary – Director Discussion

Balls documentary director_NICO STAGIAS_producer_CHARLIE DAVID

The director of the Balls documentary is Nico Stagias.  We produce a lot of content together and Nico is most often my cinematographer and co-producer. We sat down recently to discuss his experience directing this new film…

Interview with Balls documentary director, Nico Stagias

CHARLIE: You’ve created such an in depth film about testicles.  Why was it important for you to make it a holistic exploration of balls to share during Testicular Cancer Awareness Month?
 

NICO:  With our preliminary research and first interviews, it became clear that a discussion around balls needed to happen, particularly when it came to men’s health.
 
Often a symbol of masculinity, as indicated with expressions like “grow a pair” and “she’s got balls”, they are perhaps the least talked about organ of the male body.  They are relegated to be the penis’ “unattractive” and “ignored” male cousins.

 

Men tend to shy away from discussion about their balls, especially if they are experiencing medical issues like cancer, torsion or varicocele.  Because men are so guarded about their balls, they often dismiss potential testicular ailments and only address the situation when it becomes critical; when it’s too late.

 

Men, especially boys, are not encouraged to speak openly about their bodies, particularly if it is to discuss its vulnerability. As one of our subjects in the Balls documentary states: “Let’s just grab a couple of beers and forget about it”.

 

The Balls documentary aims to engage an open and honest dialogue about balls, and sometimes a lack thereof.  Balls need to be brought into the everyday, from illness to art and everything in-between.  
 

LEARN HOW TO PERFORM A TESTICULAR SELF-EXAM

Go step-by-step watching this NSFW testicular self-exam video with Johnny Rapid.

 

While creating the Balls documentary, I couldn’t help but think that this concept of how masculinity is broken and in much need of repair. This 1950’s illusion of what it is to be a paternalistic provider is coming apart.  Masculinity as it stands, is not serving men, women or people who fall within the gender spectrum.

 

We’ve associated masculinity with physical strength and power, but we have not given it the emotional strength and vulnerability it needs to survive holistically.  Somehow, our current definition about masculinity does not include: weakness, patience, gentleness, inclusiveness, queerness and femininity.

 

A new definition of masculinity needs to involve a tempered strength, a masculinity that listens and adapts to the new world.  Masculinity cannot be fixed.  It needs to adapt, otherwise, we are doomed to fail as “men”, over and over again.  

 

In the Balls documentary, perhaps this new masculinity is mostly seen through the eyes of queer men and trans people.  Perhaps this specific environment is a circumstance of me being a queer man, or perhaps queer people have more courage to discuss their balls and the notion of masculinity more vulnerably.

 

Perhaps this new restructuring of masculinity needs to speak more directly to our heterosexual counterparts.  Though to say queer people have figured-out masculinity would be incorrect.  As queer folk, we’ve often had to look outside the definitions of masculinity and femininity to make room for ourselves, but in many ways, we still get lost in heteronormative binaries.  It may seem simple, but it’s such a challenge to think outside 2 boxes. Man/Woman. Gay/Straight. Black/ White. Strong/Weak.

 

In today’s episode of the Balls documentary we meet Peter who shares the story of how testicular cancer has impacted his life.

 

 

April is Testicular Cancer Awareness Month and to celebrate we’re sharing our Balls documentary for free on YouTube in a special series of videos.

 

Please share, comment and ask questions!  We love to hear from you. 

 

WATCH the unblurred, unbleeped, balls out version of the BALLS documentary here:

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