July 6, 2022

Serbia becomes centre for sex-change surgery

Surprisingly, Serbia has become an international hub for sex-change surgery. There are now four specialist clinics catering for an international market, according to a feature in the New York Times. Last year 100 people had the operation, which costs only about US$10,000, significantly less than it does in the US where the price tag could be $50,000.

Surprisingly, Serbia has become an international hub for sex-change surgery. There are now four specialist clinics catering for an international market, according to a feature in the New York Times. Last year 100 people had the operation, which costs only about US$10,000, significantly less than it does in the US where the price tag could be $50,000.

One reason may be that Serbian surgeons work quickly – a single six-hour operation. To qualify, candidates need two letters from psychiatrists attesting that they are suffering from gender identity disorder, a year of counselling and a year of hormone therapy.

Another is that sex-change surgery is still frowned upon in many other European countries. But it is difficult to explain why this controversial procedure is flourishing in Serbia, where a gay pride parade a couple of years ago was disrupted by protesters who threw Molotov cocktails at police and chanted “death to homosexuals!”. But, officially, at any rate, the country has rapidly become more tolerant. 

Michael Cook
Creative commons
gender reassignment
sex-change surgery