2440 M Street NW, Suite 801 Washington DC 20037

Call Us Today: 202‑742‑3999

How to Prepare for Gender-Affirming Surgery

by | Jun 21, 2024 | Blog | 0 comments

Gender-affirming surgery is a significant and life-changing step for many transgender. We’re happy to help our patients align their physical appearance with their true gender identity, fostering greater confidence and well-being. However, preparing for such an important procedure involves both physical and emotional readiness. 

Here are some essential tips and advice from Dr. Ramineni and Dr. Nghiem at District Plastic Surgery to help you prepare for gender affirming surgery.

Tip 1: Choose and Understand the Procedure(s)

Before undergoing any surgical procedure, it’s important to fully understand what each one entails. Gender affirming surgeries at District Plastic Surgery include:

  • FTM Top Surgery: Removes the breasts to create a more masculine chest.
  • Vaginoplasty: Transforms penile and scrotal tissue into a functional and aesthetic vagina.
  • Gender Nullification: Involves the removal of external genitalia, smoothing the pubic region.
  • Double Incision and Periareolar Mastectomy: Removes breast tissue with different incision techniques to create a masculine chest.
  • Breast Augmentation: Uses implants or fat transfer to create a feminine chest.
  • Facial Feminization: Includes procedures like brow reduction, rhinoplasty, chin reduction, and more to feminize facial features.
  • Body Feminization: Shapes the body into a more feminine appearance using liposuction and fat transfer.
  • Masculinization Surgery: Contours the body to create a more traditionally male appearance.

Each procedure has specific preoperative requirements, recovery times, and potential risks. Discuss all details with us to understand what to expect before, during, and after surgery.

Tip 2: Psych Yourself Up

Mental preparation is just as important as physical readiness. Gender-affirming surgery can bring about a range of emotions, from excitement and relief to anxiety and fear. If accessible, work with a mental health professional who is experienced in transgender healthcare. 

They can provide support and help you navigate the emotional aspects of transitioning. You can also join support groups or connect with others who have undergone similar surgeries can also offer valuable insights and encouragement.

Tip 3: Make Some Lifestyle Changes

Prior to surgery, you may need to make certain medical and lifestyle adjustments. These can include:

  • Discontinuing Hormone Therapy: Depending on the type of surgery, you might need to temporarily stop hormone therapy. We will provide specific guidelines on when to pause and resume hormone treatments.
  • Quitting Smoking: Smoking can impede healing and increase surgical risks. If you smoke, aim to quit at least 4-6 weeks before your surgery date.
  • Diet and Exercise: Maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise routine can help your body recover more efficiently. Focus on balanced nutrition and be sure consult with our practice about any necessary dietary adjustments.

Tip 4: Arrange Post-Surgery Care

Recovery from gender-affirming surgery requires careful planning. Make sure to have a friend or family member assist you during the initial days after your procedure. They can help with daily activities and provide emotional support. Make sure your home is equipped with all necessary supplies, such as comfortable clothing, prescribed medications, and any required medical equipment.

Tip 5: Follow Preoperative Instructions

Dr. Ramineni and Dr. Nghiem will provide specific preoperative instructions tailored to your procedure. These may include fasting before surgery, avoiding certain medications, and other preparatory steps. Adhering to these instructions is vital for the success of your surgery and can help minimize complications.

Tip 6: Plan for Downtime

Recovery times vary depending on the type of surgery. Plan to take sufficient time off your regular activities to focus on healing. Rest and relaxation are critical during this period, so create a comfortable environment where you can recuperate without stress. Stock up on entertainment options like books, movies, or hobbies that you can enjoy while resting.

Tip 7: Embrace Support

Remember that you are not alone in this journey. Lean on your support network, whether it’s friends, family, or online communities. Sharing your experiences and feelings can be incredibly therapeutic and can help you stay positive and motivated throughout the process.

Tip 8: Stay Connected with Your Healthcare Team

Lastly, monitor your healing progress through regular follow-up appointments with us. Dr. Ramineni and Dr. Nghiem will schedule these visits to see if you are recovering well and to address any concerns you may have. Open communication with your healthcare team can help you navigate the postoperative period smoothly and address any issues promptly.

At District Plastic Surgery, Dr. Ramineni and Dr. Nghiem are committed to providing compassionate and expert care for those undergoing gender-affirming procedures. Schedule a consultation today to learn more about our gender-affirming procedures. We look forward to being your partners in your path to living your true, authentic life. 

Happy Pride Month – we’re happy that you’re here!


Contact Us

MM slash DD slash YYYY
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.