Top surgery can be a life-changing procedure for transgender individuals wishing to take the next step of their transition. Male to female top surgery involves surgical techniques to increase the size of the breast mound, typically with implants, helping you achieve a more feminine figure.
Am I a Candidate?
Not every transgender individual chooses to go ahead with top surgery. However, for many transwomen, it’s an important step towards confirming their gender and having their outward appearance reflect how they feel on the inside. Prior to undergoing top surgery, patients typically benefit from female hormone therapy. With an increase in estrogen, many develop some breast tissue and for some, this may be enough. But for others, a breast augmentation can help them achieve the curves they desire. Some insurance companies may cover this procedure in transwomen, but most will require letters of support from your primary doctor and/or therapist. Most insurance companies will follow WPATH (World Professional Association for Transgender Health) guidelines, and many will require that you be on hormones for at least 12 months. We also recommend that you be on estrogen for at least 12 months prior to considering MTF top surgery, since estrogen causes breast growth.
How is the Surgery Done?
MTF top surgery is performed in much the same way as a traditional breast augmentation, involving the patient’s choice of implant size, shape, material, and placement to achieve the results they desire. Dr. MacLennan will help you make these decisions during your consultation, helping you choose the implants that are appropriate for your body type and aesthetic goals. Surgery will take place under general anesthesia. A small incision will then be made, usually under the breast crease, and the implant is then placed. The incisions will then be closed and bandaged.
What is Recovery Like?
Recovery after male to female top surgery is similar to traditional breast augmentation recovery. Some swelling, bruising, and general discomfort can be expected for several days, but this is manageable with medication and ice. Patients should plan for about a week off work and may want someone there to help care for them for the first few days. Strenuous activity should be avoided for about 3-4 weeks. Over the next several months, swelling will continue to diminish and the implants will settle under the skin for more natural-looking results.
To learn more about male to female top surgery and to find out which techniques are right for you, contact our office and request your consultation with board certified plastic surgeon Dr. MacLennan.