Facial bone surgery: Developments in Feminisation

Facial Feminization Surgery (FFS) patients typically are transgender women, although the techniques are also applicable for genetic woman with more prominent masculine features. Many professionals and patients consider FFS equally as important as gender reassignment surgery, as it can significantly assist in social integration by permitting a higher rate of “passing” as a genetic female.

With only a brief glance at an individual’s face, the human brain registers the first impression of a person; It is in that same split second that the brain usually categorizes the face into a specific gender.

Some areas of the body may be camouflaged to look more feminine, although in many cases it is complicated to mimic feminine facial features without the help of surgical intervention. In addition to transgender patients, FFS also offers the opportunity to obtain significant skull and facial changes for genetic females who desire to minimize prominent masculine features.

The facial skeleton has been treated almost exclusively by maxillofacial or craniofacial surgeons until recently. Vast improvements in techniques and approaches to the facial bone complex have lead to remarkable results in facial surgery.

The application of innovative bone sculpting techniques in the field of Facial Feminization Surgery enables the surgeon to obtain dramatic changes to the cranium, via direct treatment of the bone surface to modify contours and volume, aimed at obtaining a more harmonious oval shape.

It is important to note that the effects of sculpting facial bone are highly predictable, therefore guaranteeing facial surgery results over the long term.

Subtle or dramatic changes are made possible, according to the desired results (depending on the individual):
  • sculpting the brow bone prominence,
  • softening the jawline
  • reducing the square-shaped or prominent chin
  • minimizing the tracheal prominent (Adam’s apple)

The body’s skin, fat, muscle and tendon (soft tissues) suffer exposure to numerous destructive agents such as repeated contraction, liquid retention, gravitational effect, loss of elasticity and cohesive properties and more. These factors make it difficult to predict the long-term effects of surgery on these tissues. In comparison, the facial skeleton is not sensitive to the same change vectors.

In the case of bone sculpture, modifications will remain unchanged over time, a considerable advantage.

As FFS specialists, we are sensitive to the principal differences between male and female facial skeletons as well as the current ideals in facial proportions. Every face is distinct, therefore the success of each case depends on a highly personalized facial analysis and customised treatment plan. These are the foundations for advanced bone sculpting techniques utilized to redefine a human skeleton with the aim to achieve a more harmonious and feminine visage.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS:

Dr. Luis Capitán and Dr. Daniel Simon are founders and directors of FACIAL TEAM, an internationally renowned team of professionals specialized in facial feminization surgery, based in Marbella, Spain and Sao Paulo, Brazil.