Facial feminization surgery

A natural, feminine beauty.

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Facial feminization surgery

What is facial feminization surgery (FFS)?

Facial feminization surgery is a combination of surgical procedures which reduce masculine facial features and give your face a feminine look. There are several procedures that can help achieve this. During a personal consultation, Dr Bart van de Ven advises you which of the procedures are the most suitable for you.

Why would you feminize your face?

When you look at a man’s or a woman’s face, you will notice that there are some considerable differences. Men have a bigger chin, a broader jawline, a larger forehead, a prominent nose, etc. They also have a lot more facial hair, such as thicker eyebrows, a beard, a moustache and sideburns. The surgery primarily focuses on the shape of the face. A more feminine nose, a finer jawline, reducing the size of the forehead and raising the cheekbones are just a few examples that can help create a more feminine face.

Check out the example of male to female facial feminization surgery (FFS)  below and see for yourself. Evelyn underwent facial feminization surgery (FFS), and this is what leading FFS surgeon Dr Bart van de Ven did:

  • If you look at Evelyn’s forehead, you will see that it has become flatter. Men often have a wider forehead and tend to have a more pronounced brow ridge. In Evelyn’s case, this frontal bossing has been eliminated.
  • Both Evelyn’s chin and jaw have also been reconstructed.
  • She has also had a lip lift to shorten the upper lip.
  • Rhinoplasty to refine the shape of the nose.

 

Facial feminization surgery before and after

Go to the FFS before and after gallery

Which procedures form part of facial feminization surgery?

What is the impact of facial feminization surgery on you as a person?

No one can explain this better than Nicole, a trans woman who underwent a facial feminization surgery herself:

“When I go to the store, I want people to address me as a woman without there being any signs of doubt on their voice. This recognition and acknowledgement from strangers is really important to me. Feminizing your face is a procedure that is visible to everyone, yourself and those around you. It is a major change, a milestone in my life: the start of a new life.

Is facial feminization surgery painful?

Pain is subjective. It depends on your pain threshold and which procedures Dr Bart van de Ven performs. Our patients usually say that it’s more ‘uncomfortable’ than ‘painful’. After your facial feminization surgery, you can stay at our guesthouse. Depending on the type of operation, you can stay here for up to a week. In this guesthouse, you – together with other trans women– have the time to recover from your surgery. Jolanda, our friendly resident, is on hand to help you 24/7.

Can your skin become numb after facial feminization surgery?

If Dr Bart van de Ven has carried out a procedure to change the bone structure of your face, you will most likely experience numbness in that area for a certain period of time (for example, the forehead, chin or jaw – depending on the procedure). In any case, you really don’t need to worry because it’s completely normal. This numbness occurs because your skin is detached from your bones during the surgery, which affects the nerves under your skin. So it’s not surprising that it takes a while to fully recover from facial feminization surgery. It’s not unusual for a procedure to have a 12-month recovery period, but after two to five weeks you’ll be ready to get back to work.

Should you wait for facial feminization surgery until you’ve taken enough female hormones?

According to Dr Bart van de Ven, there’s no need to delay your facial feminization surgery. You can schedule your operation as soon as you feel mentally and physically ready.

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Facial Feminization Surgeon (FFS)

Facial Feminization surgery is performed by the maxillofacial surgeon, Dr Bart van de Ven.

2pass Clinic and facial feminization surgery

At 2pass Clinic, the surgery is performed by the respected oral and maxillofacial surgeon Dr Bart van de Ven. Every week he performs four or five surgeries at 2pass Clinic. This makes him the most experienced facial feminization surgeon in the world. Dr Bart van de Ven’s goal is to create a natural, feminine look. The end result of the surgery is just as important to him as it is to you. He has an incredible eye for detail and strives for perfection. During the surgeries, Dr Bart van de Ven is assisted by Els and Hester – two very experienced nurses.

Stay in our guesthouse with resident Jolanda

Our guesthouse is located on the top floor of 2pass Clinic, where Jolanda is ready to welcome you with open arms. Here we have seven rooms available for our patients. In this warm, welcoming oasis you have time to recover from your surgery. You can also share your experiences with other trans women staying in the guesthouse.

Facial feminization surgery

Jolanda is the resident at the 2pass Clinic guesthouse. She is on hand to help you 24/7. Jolanda was once one of Dr Bart van de Ven’s patients, so she knows exactly what kind of help you will need throughout the entire process. Every day she makes a delicious breakfast and fresh meals packed with nutritious ingredients to help you get back on your feet after your surgery.

Your facial feminization surgery in three steps

Book your consultation

During an initial consultation with Dr Bart van de Ven, you will discuss your facial feminization surgery. What are the options? Which are the best procedures for you? How does it all work? During this initial consultation you will have all your questions answered. Consultations can be arranged at the 2pass Clinic in Antwerp, but it’s also possible to schedule appointments with Dr Bart van de Ven in London, Munich, Berlin and New York. Find out when Dr Bart van de Ven is in your area >

Book your facial feminization surgery

In the second step, you plan your surgery. The waiting time for facial feminization surgery is approximately three months. Once you have chosen a date, we ask you to fill out a form. This form includes a list of questions, so we have all the information we need to help you as best we can during your stay at 2pass Clinic. We will then ask you to transfer an advance payment within seven days. Once we have received your payment, we can confirm your facial feminization surgery.

Your facial feminization surgery

You are expected at 2pass Clinic one day before your facial feminization surgery. Our patient coordinator welcomes you at the reception and accompanies you to our guesthouse. This gives you the chance to settle in to your home for the next few days. You can have a chat with the other patients, ask Jolanda questions and relax and unwind. The day before your facial feminization surgery you will have a face-to-face consultation with Dr Bart van de Ven, during which he will talk you through the entire operation step by step.

After your facial feminization surgery you will stay at the guesthouse for a couple of days so that you can recover and get back on your feet. On the first days after your operation, our employees will take care of your every need. By the time you are ready to return home, you will no longer require any extra care. Should there be any complications following your facial feminization surgery, we will of course provide the necessary treatment to rectify the situation – without additional fees for the surgical procedure.

Four months after your surgery you are expected to visit Dr Bart van de Ven for a check-up. This appointment is scheduled immediately after booking your facial feminization surgery. It is possible to change the date and time of this appointment. The check-up takes place at the 2pass Clinic in Antwerp, London, Munich, Berlin or New York – depending on Dr Bart van de Ven’s schedule.

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Facial feminization surgery: video testimonial


Testimonial Kymberley after facial feminization surgery


Facial Feminization Surgery After Video

Jolina’s Facial Feminization Surgery

More FFS testimonials

FAQ facial feminization surgery

How would the clinic deal with an emergency if serious complications were to arise during the procedure?

If a patient needs hospitalisation we would transfer her to the Middelheim hospital which is 8 minutes or 3,5km from our clinic.

We have had this situation 2 times in more than 700 surgeries. In case this would be because of a mistake from our side we have an insurance that covers the cost. More likely is that it happens without anyone having made a mistake. In that case most health insurances cover these costs.  If you don’t have a health insurance it’s your (financial) risk.

When can I judge the final result?

After three weeks you would look presentable but it takes at least 4 months to get a good impression of the final result. Sometimes after chin and jaw work it can take up to a year for the swelling to completely disappear. Scars take about a year to fully mature.

What type of care is needed after the treatment? Will I require check-ups in my own country?

All care in Antwerp is provided. In general no extra care is needed in your home country. Check-up with Dr Bart is after 4 months and can be in any city where Dr Bart van de Ven provides consultations.

What happens if there are complications after the procedure and is this covered?

We will correct the complication if surgically possible, without charging any surgical fees. Hospital, material and traveling costs are for the expense of the patient.

How long is the waiting time to book an operation?

The average waiting time for an operation at the moment is two months. For big surgeries it can be a bit more, for small surgeries often less. You can check availability through our online operation planner.

Is FFS painful?

There is no complete answer to this. It depends entirely on the pain threshold of the patient, and the operation procedures performed.Most procedures will involve the need for some incisions, and closure with sutures. Inevitably these will lead to some level of discomfort for some period post-operation. Mostly patients describe it as ‘uncomfortable’ rather then ‘pain’.

Can I loose feeling permanently in some areas following FFS surgery?

Some temporary numbness in any of the areas where bone work is done is an absolute certainty. That could include the scalp, forehead, chin, jaw or even cheek areas depending on where the surgery has been done. This is simply because the flesh is detached from the bony area. Several thousand minor nerves are severed, and it will obviously take some while for those areas to heal. Up to 18 months is not unusual, but less than that is more common.

I’m a bit overweight. What is the maximum BMI for elective surgery?

In principle the maximum BMI is 30. If your BMI is between 30 and 35 but you are in good health, your case is considered on an individual basis by our anaesthesiologist (fill out the anesthesiology form) and we also need Cardiopulmonary Exercise Test (CPET). If your BMI is higher then 35 we don’t operate, so you would need to lose weight.

Will I have numbness?

The treatment areas will feel numb in the beginning. It will take 3-6 months to recover feeling, and you may not regain the same level of feeling as before.

Should I wait with FFS until I have taken hormones long enough?

The hormones will have their effect on the soft tissues of your face: the fat will redistribute and the muscles will atrophy a bit. Also the facial hair will diminish and hair to the scalp will become denser and thicker. All this will make your face look softer and more feminine.
Dr van de Ven will try to make your face as feminine as possible and there is no negative effect to your face becoming even more feminine after your FFS due to the hormones. Those last changes will be very subtle. Therefore Dr van de Ven does not see a reason to postpone FFS if you have only started taking hormones recently.

You still have another question? Feel free to ask! We will answer your question and if generally applicable add it to the FAQ of this page.