What is FTM Facial Masculinization Gender Confirmation Surgery?

What is FTM Facial Masculinization Gender Confirmation Surgery?
Masculinization techniques. Image credit: Chris Gralapp
Masculinization techniques. Image credit: Chris Gralapp

FTM Facial masculinization surgery includes several procedures

Female-to-Male (FTM) Facial Masculinization Gender Confirmation Surgery is a set of surgical procedures that include specialized reconstructive, and plastic surgeries, that work together to modify facial features and underlying facial structures, to make the face appear more masculine.

Who is an ideal candidate for Facial Masculinization Gender Confirmation Surgery?

There are two types of individuals for whom Facial Masculinization Gender Confirmation Surgery may be the right solution: 

  1. Cisgender males (male assigned male at birth) wanting to appear more masculine. For example for a male who is born with a “weak chin” and wants a more chiseled and defined chin and jawline.
  2. FTM Transgender individuals (transmen) undergoing female-to-male transition who are seeking a more masculine facial appearance. Sometimes testosterone therapy on its own is not enough to achieve the aesthetic result that they may be seeking. FTM is a permanent solution to achieving a more masculine looking face.

What kind of surgeon has the right qualifications to perform facial masculinization?

Often facial gender confirmation surgery for transgender individuals is performed by plastic surgeons. However, for your surgery to be fully successful your surgeon should have a deeper understanding of not only of the aesthetic qualities of a male face but also the underlying craniofacial (bony) structures that define masculinity. For this reason, we recommend that your plastic surgeon is also qualified as a craniofacial (maxillofacial) and as a jaw surgeon to get the most successful result.

Is it safe to have my facial masculinization surgery done all at once?

Most facial confirmation patients chose to do the entire facial masculinization surgery at the one session. This may take anywhere from 6-12 hours depending on your desired result and recommended set of surgical procedures. Undertaking multiple surgeries at the one time is very common within the context of facial masculinization and usually quite safe if you are reasonably healthy.

How long will recovery from my surgery take?

You will stay the night in a hospital in San Francisco under observation immediately after your surgery. Usually Dr. Deschamps-Braly will visit with you first thing in the morning on the day after your surgery. Initially, you will experience facial swelling and mild discomfort. However, because we will have taken steps to reduce your pain and swelling before you were operated on, these symptoms should subside rapidly. Read more about our pre-op pain relief strategies here.

Within about 10 days after your surgery, most of the swelling and bruising will disappear. After approximately three weeks you should have full recovery and be able to resume your usual activities such as exercising. The results of your surgery will continue to improve over the next few months, with the final result being evident between six to twelve months.

Which surgical procedures are included in facial gender confirmation?

The cluster of surgical procedures included in facial gender confirmation is varied and diverse. Which actual procedures are performed depends on the individual’s existing facial structure and desired aesthetic outcomes.

Procedures for facial gender confirmation include: