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Unethical surgeon loses job after sharing graphic & demeaning pics of trans patients on Instagram

Doctor with latex gloves
Photo: Shutterstock

A surgeon who has worked with transgender people for decades has left his job after he violated several patients’ privacy on social media.

Christopher Salgado worked at the University of Miami and was a genital reconstruction surgeon.

Several months ago, though, he started to write inappropriate posts on his Instagram account.

One of the posts was the dissected penis of one of his patients, arranged in the shape of a heart. He posted it on Valentine’s Day with the message “There are many ways to show your LOVE.”

He also posted a picture of a dildo that was surgically removed from someone’s anus and wrote that it “could have been avoided if the transman had a real phalloplasty.”

Related: Transgender man sues Catholic hospital for refusing his hysterectomy

In a post from January, he shared a video of what he said was a patient’s “MTF vaginoplasty” and discussed some of the techniques he used. The previous day, he shared a video where he said he was constructing a patient’s “neoclitoris.”

In December 2018, he shared an image of a trans man’s scrotum cut open with testicle implants in it.

He did not just work on transgender patients, and he shared images and video from other plastic surgeries that he was apparently involved in, like facial reconstruction and penis enlargement surgeries.

In one post, Salgado discussed penis enlargement surgery and used the hashtag “#asiancock.”

Salgado has deleted his Instagram account since it was shared in a Facebook group for trans men last month. The posts have been archived as images.

The posts caught attention on social media and resulted in a petition sent to the American College of Surgeons.

The petition says that Salgado’s Instagram account used “racist, transphobic, homophobic comments and hashtags” and that he violated his patients’ privacy.

“Transgender patients are an incredibly vulnerable population as it relates to seeking medical care. We experience violence, neglect, misgendering, sexual assault, and more,” the petition states.

“To see a surgeon who claims to specialize in treating transgender patients using racist, homophobic, and transphobic hashtags like ‘asian dick,’ ‘get that money,’ ‘what the fuck is that’ among many, many other horrifically inappropriate comments is beyond unacceptable.”

Salgado’s name is no longer listed on the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s page on gender affirmation care.

A dean of the medical school told Noah Adams at Trans Advocate that Salgado’s posts were “disgusting” and said that Salgado is no longer employed by the university.

It is not known whether he resigned or was fired. The University of Miami said in a statement that it “does not comment on the detailed status of employees.”

Salgado has also been accused of sexually harassing a genderqueer colleague.

Psychotherapist Laura Jacobs said that at the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) conference in 2016, Salgado approached her while she was having drinks at the hotel bar.

Salgado told her that she should open her shirt and show her breasts more after he found out that she is transfeminine. When she said that she is genderqueer, he challenged her identity, followed her, and invaded her space.

She notified WPATH about the incident and they said that they are working to address it.

WPATH is currently looking into Salgado’s apparent violations of his patients’ privacy and they said that they may consider a class action lawsuit.

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