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Knowing If You’re Ready for Female to Male (FTM) or Female to Non-Binary (FTN) Top Surgery

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Even for individuals who are born genetically and biologically female but have significant gender dysphoria, the decision to remove feminine breasts still may not always be an easy one. 

Man's hand resting on his chest.

Though it is very rare for FTM and FTN top surgery patients to regret their decision, it is, nevertheless, not a choice to make lightly. Considering that top surgery is a permanent and life-changing transition, potential candidates need to think through it carefully and determine if they are entirely ready to take this step.

This blog will look at the many psychological and emotional aspects of choosing FTM and FTN top surgery and what makes an individual confident that it is the right choice for them.

Life Challenges Before FTM and FTN Top Surgery

Many transmen and gender non-binary individuals experience significant distress, known as gender dysphoria, as their inner sense of self and gender identity doesn’t align with their biological sex. In particular, their feminine breasts may feel completely unnatural, foreign and even repulsive to them and generally are the prime culprit in their misgendering.

In addition, many feel that they are subjected to discrimination, intimidation and disrespect. This can adversely impact one’s mental health, further increasing the likelihood and extent of depression, anxiety and low self-esteem. 

According to some studies, rates of anxiety and depression are much higher in the transgender community than in the general population.

Gender-affirming surgery, such as an FTM or FTN top surgery, is incredibly effective in reducing, if not eliminating, depression, anxiety and poor self-esteem. This helps one to live a happier, healthier and more fulfilling life.

Criteria Necessary to Pursue for Female to Male (FTM) or Female to Non-Binary (FTN) Top Surgery

You Suffer From Persistent Gender Dysphoria

FTM and FTN top surgery is quite effective and therapeutic for transmen and gender nonbinary individuals suffering from gender dysphoria who seek to make their physical appearance align with their gender identity. A flatter, more masculine/non-feminine chest can relieve symptoms of gender dysphoria and ultimately change how others interact with you.

A Behavioral Health Specialist Has Confirmed Your Procedure

Even if you strongly desire to have the procedure, it is imperative that you undergo a thorough assessment by a mental health care professional. There are a few important reasons for this. First, this evaluation is a protection for you as it can help reduce the risk of buyer’s remorse – where one ultimately realizes that the decision to surgically transition was a big mistake. 

Secondly, if you are seeking insurance coverage for the procedure, all insurance companies presently mandate that you have a letter written by this professional supporting your desire for the top surgery and with a diagnosis of gender dysphoria. 

Finally, virtually all surgeons and surgery centers require this letter as well before surgery can be undertaken.

You’re of Legal Age

While top surgery can be performed on minors in many states, parental consent is absolutely required. However, even where this is allowed, many surgeons will not perform the procedures on minors. 

In addition, many insurance companies that offer top surgery coverage will not authorize the surgery for those under 18 years of age.

You Are in Good General Health

Generally, you should be healthy enough to handle the surgery. Individuals with significant health problems, such as kidney or heart diseases, may not qualify for the procedure.

Lastly, you should have realistic expectations of the procedure’s outcome and understand the potential risks and consequences of top surgery.

The decision to undergo FTM top surgery can be emotionally draining and challenging – but ultimately, tremendously rewarding. 

Contact Dr. Steven Turkeltaub in Scottsdale, AZ

Dr. Steven Turkeltaub is a highly sought-after plastic surgeon specializing in top surgery for transmen, gender nonbinary individuals and transwomen. He is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. 

During your consultation, Dr. Turkeltaub will discuss your concerns, determine your candidacy and develop a customized surgical plan to help satisfy your physical transition goals and help you to obtain an excellent and life-changing result. We approach every case with compassionate care and a commitment to safety and privacy and are available to answer any questions or concerns you have.

Call us today at 480-451-3000 or fill out a contact form here to schedule your consultation.