AAFPRS Statement on Treating Transgender Men and Women

Caitlyn Jenner, formerly known as Bruce, is getting a lot of media attention during her transition. Jenner’s journey will be the focus of a docu-series on E! and she spoke openly with ABC news anchor Diane Sawyer about life as a transgender woman.

Jenner is not alone. There are nearly 700,000 transgender individuals in the U.S, according to The Williams Institute of the UCLA School of Law. Surgery – including facial feminization or masculinization procedures – may be part of the treatment for some of these individuals. It is through one’s face that a person primarily presents themselves to the world and it is important for one’s appearance to accurately convey that individual’s true sense of self. The procedures known collectively as facial feminization surgery (or FFS) can be very helpful.  These procedures may include hairline advancement and reshaping, brow bone shaping (or frontal cranioplasty), eyebrow lifting, rhinoplasty (feminizing nose surgery), cheek augmentation, chin and jaw shaping (mandibuloplasty), lip lift and augmentation, Adam’s apple reduction (or tracheal shave surgery), and anti-aging procedures such as facelift and eyelift.

Like all people, transgender individuals must be treated with respect and dignity.   The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS) has for several years provided educational opportunities for physicians to learn how to best care for transgender individuals and
urges patients to select a board-certified surgeon who specializes in plastic surgery of the face, head and neck and has extensive experience treating transgender patients. Research surgeons and procedural information via trusted online sources (www.aafprs.org).   It is suggested to review before/after photographs and ask to speak with other patients who had similar procedures with the surgeon.