Chest Reconstruction Surgery
Top surgery referrals vary from person to person, as each gender clinic have their own guidelines that they work with. Some say around 9 months others 12 months from the time of starting hormone treatment.
Preparing for Surgery
Your gender clinic may have mentioned to you about what some surgeons expect you to do before surgery, such as quitting smoking and also losing weight if needed. They say that your BMI should be around 30 or for you to get as close as you can to your ideal weight. You may also be advised to reduce the time spent wearing your binder before surgery.
The reason for weight loss is that it is safer when under anesthetic if you are not overweight. It also helps the surgeon contour your chest and reduce the risk of dog ears under your armpits.
The double incision is often used for transmen with larger than a C chest. Horizontal or U-shaped incisions are placed under the line of the pectoral muscles to reduce visibility. This will involve removal and re-positioning of the nipple.
Keyhole and peri-areolar techniques are for those who are small chested. With keyhole a small incision is made along the bottom of the areola and tissue is removed using a liposuction needle. There is no need to for the nipple to be removed or resized.
The surgery can normally last 3 to 4 hours, and you can be discharged the same day. You will normally go back a week later for the dressing to be removed.
Can I have top surgery without taking hormones?
Here in the UK it maybe possible for top surgery to happen without hormones. Information on doing it this way is very scarce. It would be down to you and your therapist at the GIC as to how the process works. You may still need two doctor’s to agree that you are ready for top surgery.
If you plan on going down the private route in the UK or Overseas for top surgery then some surgeons may still require a letter from a therapist.
The most popular surgeons used are Mr Andrew Yelland here in the UK and Dr Charles Garramone in the States.
Check out our surgeons page for a list of surgeons who perform chest reconstruction surgery.
If you would like to see some before and after photos check out Mr Andrew Yelland’s transurgery these will give you an idea on what to expect.
Need more Information
If you are looking for more information on chest surgery please check out CN Lester, they did a Q&A with a group of people around top surgery processes and general questions that people submitted. (thanks Joey for the information)