BOSTON (CBSLA.com) — A man remains hospitalized at a facility in Boston after undergoing the nation’s first-ever penis transplant.

Doctors had to remove most of Thomas Manning’s genitals to save his life after he was diagnosed with cancer in 2012.

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“Today I begin a new chapter filled with personal hope and hope for others who have suffered genital injuries, particularly for our service members who put their lives on the line and suffer serious damage as a result,” the 64-year-old from Halifax, Massachusetts said in a statement.

He underwent the 15-hour, groundbreaking procedure at Massachusetts General Hospital last week, which involved a transplanted organ from a deceased donor.

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Dr. Mallika Marshall of WBZ-TV News reported that Manning’s doctors are hopeful normal urination and sexual function will be possible. But, as with any transplant, there is a possibility of rejection.

“There are different tissues involved,” said Dr. Curtis Cetrulo at a news conference. “Different lymphatic tissues so we’ll just have to take it day by day and see how we go.”

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Manning, who remains hospital, says he is sharing his story to remove any shame or stigma associated with genital cancers or injuries, Marshall said.