Facial feminization surgery (FFS) involves an extensive series of procedures aimed at giving the face a more feminine appearance. Such procedures may consist of altering the hairline for a reduced forehead size, enhancing the lips and cheekbones, or modifying the shape and size of the jaw and chin. An additional option could be skin-tightening operations like a facelift.
Facial feminization surgery may be pursued as part of the comprehensive treatment for individuals experiencing distress due to a discrepancy between their gender identity and their sex assigned at birth, also known as gender dysphoria. These methods can aid transgender women in their physical transition into their self-identified gender – which is why the procedure is also commonly referred to as gender affirmation surgery.
To learn more about FFS customized medical facials and how it can benefit you, contact Radiance Surgery and Aesthetic Medicine to schedule your personalized consultation with Dr. Huynh. We proudly serve our community in Atlanta and the neighboring communities of Sandy Springs, Buckhead, Dunwoody, Alpharetta, Kennesaw, Rosewell, Johns Creek, Duluth, Lawrenceville, Suwanee, Marietta, Brookhaven, and Cumming, Georgia.
Who is a Candidate for FFS?
FFS candidates typically include individuals who wish to modify their facial features to achieve a more traditionally feminine appearance. This often encompasses transgender women as part of their physical transition, but it’s not exclusive to this group.
People experiencing gender dysphoria, a condition characterized by distress due to a mismatch between one’s gender identity and their sex assigned at birth, might also consider FFS as a component of their overall treatment plan.
Furthermore, anyone, regardless of their gender identity, who wishes to soften or feminize their facial characteristics for personal reasons could be a candidate.
It’s important to note, however, that an important qualifying factor for a candidate’s suitability for FFS is having realistic expectations for the outcome of the procedure.
A thorough consultation with a qualified, experienced, and specialized medical professional is essential to determine individual suitability for the procedure based on physical health, psychological well-being, and realistic expectations.
What are the Different Types of FFS Procedures?
The specific FFS procedures included in any individual patient’s FFS will depend on the desired outcome of the patient. That said, most procedures tend to focus on areas of the face that differ between traditionally masculine and feminine faces due to bone structure and soft tissue distribution. Some of the more common types of FFS procedures include:
Forehead contouring involves modifying the shape and size of the forehead to create a more feminine appearance, often by reducing a prominent brow ridge and reshaping the forehead.
A brow lift pulls the eyebrows higher, further away from the eyes. This helps create a more traditionally feminine appearance, while also giving the patient a more alert countenance.
Hairline lowering moves the hairline forward to decrease the size of the forehead, a feature typically more prominent in masculine faces.
Rhinoplasty in FFS often aims to create a smaller, narrower, or more pointed nose, which are features often associated with femininity.
Cheek and chin augmentation
Cheek and chin augmentation generally involves implants or fat grafting to create fuller, rounder cheeks, a feature often more prominent in feminine faces, or in softening the chin.
An FFS lip augmentation can involve fillers or implants to create fuller, more pronounced lips, which are typically considered a feminine feature.
V-line jaw contouring
V-line jaw contouring aims to soften the jawline, using bone shaving or filing to sculpt a narrower, less angular jawline and a smaller, more pointed chin, features often associated with femininity.
Tracheal shave (Adam’s Apple reduction)
Tracheal shaving reduces the size of the Adam’s Apple, which is a notoriously masculine physical characteristic.
Facelift or neck lift
Face and neck lifts tighten skin and reduce signs of ageing around the neck and mid-regions of the face. While these characteristics aren’t necessarily specific to feminization, they can help patients achieve their desired aesthetic appearance.
Blepharoplasty (Eyelid surgery)
Eyelid surgery can create a more open, alert look often associated with femininity by removing excess skin and fat from the eyelids.
Remember that every patient is unique, and the specific combination of procedures that might be recommended will depend on the person’s existing facial features, their goals for surgery, and their surgeon’s professional judgment. It’s always important to consult with a qualified medical professional before deciding on any surgical procedure.
Choosing an FFS Surgeon: Factors to Consider
Choosing the right FFS surgeon for Facial Feminization Surgery (FFS) is a critical decision that will, in most cases, mean the difference between getting the results you desire, and being unhappy with the outcome of your procedure.
Any patient considering FFS should take the following into account:
Ensure the surgeon is certified by a surgical specialty board with focus on aesthetic plastic surgery of the face, head and neck. Board certification assures that the surgeon has met rigorous educational and practical training standards, and adheres to an on-going practice of staying up-to-date with developments in the industry. Dr. Carson Huynh is fellowship-trained and double board certified by both The American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and The American Board of Cosmetic Surgery (Facial).
Experience and specialization in FFS
Patients should choose a surgeon who has substantial experience and specializes in FFS. The surgeon should have a comprehensive understanding of the nuances of facial feminization surgery and should be familiar with the latest techniques and advancements in the field – and should also be experienced in performing each procedure in conjunction with other treatments, so patients get the best results possible.
Before-and-after photos and testimonials
Looking at the surgeon’s before-and-after photos is a fantastic way for patients to get a clear understanding of the results they can expect from FFS with the surgeon in question. It is also one of the best ways to verify surgeon experience and to get a look into how other patient’s felt their treatment went.
A connection with your surgeon is one of the best ways to get the results you desire. This is because open communication, and a feeling of mutual respect and comfort helps people clearly convey their desires, concerns, reservations and hopes for FFS surgery.
During the consultation, the surgeon should evaluate your facial structure, discuss your goals and expectations, explain the available options, and recommend a personalized surgical plan.
Any surgeon should clearly state their FFS cost, and the surgeon’s office should be willing to discuss financing options if necessary.
Preparing for FFS: What to Expect
Getting the best results possible from FFS surgery depends on having realistically aligned expectations, choosing the right surgeon, and in adequately preparing for the procedure. Preparation for FFS involves several pre-treatment steps to ensure everything is in order. These steps include:
- Medical evaluation: Your surgeon will conduct a comprehensive medical evaluation to determine your overall health status and suitability for surgery. This will likely include a physical examination, a review of your medical history, and possibly some laboratory tests.
- Mental health assessment: Given the psychological aspects of FFS, a mental health assessment is often part of the pre-surgical evaluation. This can help ensure that you have a clear understanding of the surgery, realistic expectations, and are emotionally prepared for the changes it will bring.
- Pre-surgical instructions: Your surgeon will provide specific instructions to prepare for surgery. These may include guidelines about eating, drinking, and smoking; medications to avoid; and whether you’ll need to adjust any current medications.
- Preparation for recovery: Arrange for someone to drive you home after the surgery and stay with you for at least the first night. You’ll also need to take some time off work or other obligations to allow for a proper recovery period.
- Physical preparation: Patients should lead a healthy lifestyle in the weeks leading up to their surgery. This includes limiting alcoholic intake and smoking, eating a balanced and nutritious diet, and getting plenty of exercise. This helps patients prepare their bodies and minds for optimal recovery after the treatment.
FFS Recovery and Aftercare
Recovery is a crucial step in ensuring the results from FFS are as good as possible. This is a very sensitive time for a patient, and adhering to your surgeon’s instructions and also listening to your body is essential in making sure FFS recovery happens as quickly and as event-free as possible.
As mentioned above, patients will need someone ready to drive them home from the clinic after treatment. From here, they will need as much rest as possible over the next two weeks – think plenty of couch time, reading, sleep, and eating healthy foods and drinking plenty of water. This gives the face an opportunity to settle while limiting any potential for the patient to have an accident which might disrupt the healing process.
Swelling, bruising and pain can be managed with prescribed medications and cold compresses, and patients should also consult with their doctor during this phase to determine when they can start light exercise. Your surgeon will also give you detailed instructions on how to clean any incisions and your skin during this time to optimize healing, reduce scarring, and ensure there is no infection.
Risks and Complications of FFS
As with any surgical procedure, FFS carries potential risks and complications. Choosing a skilled and experienced surgeon will minimize these risks; nonetheless, patients should still be aware of them. These include:
- Infection: Despite strict sterile techniques, there’s always a risk of infection with any surgical procedure. Antibiotics are often given to minimize this risk.
- Bleeding: There’s a risk of bleeding during or after the surgery, which in rare cases can lead to a hematoma (a collection of blood outside the blood vessels).
- Scarring: While surgeons make every effort to place incisions in discreet locations, some degree of scarring is inevitable. The severity of scarring varies based on individual healing characteristics and the specific procedures performed.
- Nerve damage: Some procedures carry the risk of temporary or permanent nerve damage, which could result in numbness or changes in facial movements.
- Asymmetry: While surgeons strive for symmetry, it’s possible that the two sides of the face may not be perfectly symmetrical after surgery.
- Anesthesia Risks: There are always potential risks associated with anesthesia, including allergic reactions and problems with breathing.
- Unsatisfactory results: As with any surgery, there is a chance that results of the surgery may not meet your expectations. This could require additional surgeries.
- Psychological distress: The physical changes and recovery process can lead to emotional and psychological distress. Support from mental health professionals, friends, and family can be beneficial in managing these feelings.
Schedule Your Personalized FFS Surgery Today in Atlanta
During this consultation, you and Dr. Carson will explore your desires and goals for FFS surgery, and Dr. Carson will thoroughly examine your facial structure, shape, and skin quality. He’ll also ask some health-related questions to ensure that you are the best candidate for this procedure. Finally, you’ll be provided with Dr. Carson’s expert recommendations on the best ways to achieve your aesthetic results. If you’re ready to achieve a gorgeous feminine appearance, we invite you to call (678) 412-0311 or reach us online today!