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Risks of facial feminisation surgery

Our expert, Helen Witherow, discusses the risks of facial feminisation surgery.

risks of facial feminisation surgery

As with all surgery, there are some risks associated with facial feminisation surgery.

With upper face surgery, bruising and swelling around the eyes can last 2-3 weeks following

surgery and I would suggest that this time is spent recuperating rather than working. After this

period you will still notice gradual changes as the final swelling settles.


Complications of any surgery include bleeding and infection. Specific to this type of surgery

are possible hair loss at the scar site. This is usually temporary, but in some cases can be

permanent. Numbness of the forehead and scalp is also usually temporary, but

there may be some permanent numbness of small areas of the scalp.


Everybody has an asymmetric face and following surgery some asymmetry maybe noticed. As

you continue to age the natural consequences of aging may produce some drooping of the brow

again, and you may wish further surgery later in life to improve this.


With jaw surgery, Initial bruising and swelling will settle over 2-3 weeks but you will notice changes for a number

of months after the surgery as the final swelling settles.


Infection is more commonin the mouth after surgery. This is because there are several bacteria

in the mouth that do not occur on the skin or other parts of the body. Because of this, it is

important that before you have surgery you should have good oral hygiene and your dental care

is up to date. I will arrange for you to have x-rays of your teeth and jaws prior to your surgery

to advise if there is any dental treatment needed prior to your surgery. Following

surgery you will have antibiotics and an antibacterial mouthwash to use while the wounds in

the mouth are healing.


Also, following surgery, you may have some numbness of the lower lip and chin point. This is

because the nerve to the lip and chin area runs through the jaw and exits the jaw through a

small hole situated in the jaw in the region of the premolar teeth. This type of surgery may

stretch the nerve causing some alteration in sensation. This is usually temporary, but may

occasionally persist.


Do you have a question for Helen Witherow on risks of facial feminisation surgery? Enquire here.

The Face Surgeons