Clitoroplasty is a surgical procedure that involves altering the size or appearance of the clitoris and/or the clitoral hood (prepuce). The specific surgical technique used may vary depending on the individual’s anatomy, goals, and the surgeon’s expertise. Here is an overview of the general steps involved in clitoroplasty:
- Anesthesia: The procedure is typically performed under general anesthesia to ensure the patient is unconscious and does not feel any pain during the surgery.
- Incision: The surgeon makes incisions around the clitoral hood and clitoral area to access the underlying structures.
- Clitoral Reduction: If clitoral hypertrophy (enlarged clitoris) is present, the surgeon will carefully reduce the size of the clitoris while preserving its sensitivity and functionality. The goal is to create a clitoris that is proportional to the individual’s anatomy and aligns with their gender identity.
- Clitoral Hood Reduction: The surgeon may also perform a clitoral hood reduction to create a more feminine appearance. Excess tissue from the clitoral hood is removed, and the remaining tissue is contoured to achieve a desired shape.
- Nerve Preservation: During the procedure, the surgeon takes care to preserve the nerve endings and blood supply to the clitoral area to maintain sexual sensitivity.
- Suturing: After the necessary adjustments have been made, the surgeon closes the incisions with sutures. Dissolvable sutures may be used in some cases.
- Dressings and Recovery: Dressings are applied to protect the surgical site, and the patient is monitored in the recovery area before being transferred to a hospital room or allowed to go home, depending on the facility’s protocol.
- Post-Operative Care: Following surgery, patients will receive post-operative care instructions, including wound care and hygiene recommendations. Pain management and follow-up appointments will be provided to ensure proper healing.
It’s important to note that clitoroplasty is a delicate procedure that requires expertise in gender-affirming surgeries and knowledge of the unique needs of transgender patients. The surgical technique may vary based on the individual’s specific anatomy, medical history, and desired outcomes. As with any surgery, there are potential risks and complications, and patients should thoroughly discuss the procedure, potential outcomes, and risks with a qualified surgeon before making a decision.
Clitoroplasty is often performed as part of a comprehensive gender confirmation surgery or gender-affirming surgery plan. Patients interested in clitoroplasty should seek consultation with a skilled and experienced gender-affirming surgeon who can provide personalized care and guidance throughout the surgical process.