A common gender-affirming surgery available for trans women is male-to-female surgery. This surgery can be life-changing and a way of affirming your identity, allowing trans women to feel more comfortable in their own skin and achieve the body they desire.
Here's everything you need to know about male-to-female gender-affirming surgery, including if it's the right decision for you.
What is Male-to-Female Gender Affirming Surgery?
Gender affirming surgery is surgery that can be performed on people who feel that their gender identity does not match the sex they were assigned at birth. Male-to-female gender-affirming surgery is one of several treatments of gender-affirming care currently available for trans and non-binary people.
Male-to-female gender-affirming surgeries change the primary sexual characteristics of a person from male to female. Your board-certified plastic surgeon may also refer to this procedure as a sex reassignment surgery or gender reassignment surgery.
What are the Different Types of Gender-Affirming Care?
Gender-affirming care can occur in the form of:
For male-to-female transitions, this can include treatments to increase feminine characteristics, such as hormone therapy to increase breast tissue growth, decrease body hair and muscle mass, as well as change your overall scent and smell. Other non-surgical treatments include voice therapy, reproductive counseling, and mental health therapy.
Male-to-female surgeries can include:
- Top Surgery
- Facial Reconstruction Surgery
- Bottom Surgery (changes to genitals)
What are the Different Types of Male to Female Gender Affirming Surgery?
There are different male-to-female gender-affirming surgeries that you can do:
Transfeminine bottom surgery
This procedure can include the removal of the testicles, known as an orchiectomy. In addition, your plastic surgeon could perform a vaginoplasty to construct a vagina. A few different techniques can be used in vaginoplasty procedures, but the most common is skin grafts from the patient's body. During vaginoplasty, the inner and outer labia of the vaginal canal, urethral opening, and vaginal opening are constructed using tissue from your foreskin.
Instead of a vaginoplasty, some patients may choose a vulvoplasty. This surgical procedure is used to create the external female genitalia—the vulva. A vulvoplasty lacks the internal part of the vaginal canal and is less complex than a vaginoplasty.
Transfeminine Top Surgery
This procedure involves the insertion of breast implants or fat grafting to give a rounder and fuller chest.
Facial Feminization Surgery
Depending on the patient, this could include:
- Jawline reduction
- Chin surgery
- Contouring of the forehead
- Cheek augmentation
- Lip augmentation
- Reduction of the Adam's apple
Is Male to Female Gender Affirming Surgery Right for You?
Gender-affirming surgery is an important step in the transition process for many transgender people. It can help to alleviate gender dysphoria and improve their quality of life.
While risks are involved, as with any surgery, they can be minimized by working with an experienced board-certified plastic surgeon who specializes in gender-affirming care.