In order to better understand the requirements and risks involved with gender reassignment surgery, Loren S. Schechter, M.D. Plastic Surgery’s team of medical experts suggests reading the following plastic surgery information. This material should be used as a guideline only. Specific recommendations regarding your care will be made by Dr. Loren Schechter.

Patients’ Weight and Gender Confirmation Surgery

Certain risks and complications from plastic surgery are increased in overweight patients. For safety reasons, male-to-female (MTF) gender reassignment and female-to-male (FTM) gender reassignment surgery procedures will not be performed on morbidly obese individuals. In individuals who are overweight, but not morbidly obese, operating is still very difficult and the results may be compromised. The final judgement about whether or not surgery can be performed will be determined at the time of your physical examination.

Hormones and Other Drugs

We recommend that you discontinue taking hormones (except spironolactone) two weeks prior to and two weeks after surgery. Other medications that may cause prolonged bleeding should also be discontinued prior to surgery. Specific questions regarding medications will be addressed by Dr. Schechter prior to surgery.

Examples of medications to avoid before and after surgery:

  • Aspirin and aspirin-containing products
  • Ibuprofen and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs)
  • Herbal supplements and medications
  • Certain vitamins (check with Dr. Schechter)
  • Anticoagulants/blood-thinners such as coumadin/warfarin, plavix, and lovenox


Smoking can result in poor healing, bad scars, and death of grafts and flaps. We recommend that you abstain from smoking after surgery while your body recovers.

Surgical Risks

We expect to deliver positive results. However, complications can occur. Every surgical procedure involves a certain amount of risk, and it is important that you understand the risks involved with your gender reassignment surgery procedure. It is impossible for a surgeon to disclose every conceivable risk, but the following plastic surgery information is intended to help prepare you for surgery. Dr. Schechter will also review these issues with you at the time of your consultation.

  • Scars result from any surgical procedure, but efforts are made to conceal them or make them as inconspicuous as possible. Occasionally, excessive scarring can occur.
  • Signs of inflammation – such as tenderness, swelling, and discoloration – may last until the incisions are completely healed.
  • Numbness in or around the incisions may occur. Occasionally, this numbness becomes permanent. Numbness may also occur in the hands, arms or legs due to the position of the body during surgery.