The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) is a professional organization that provides guidelines for the care of transgender and gender-diverse people. The WPATH Standards of Care (SOC) are a set of guidelines that are used by healthcare providers to assess and treat transgender and gender-diverse people.

The WPATH SOC for top surgery include the following:
⦁ Diagnosis of gender dysphoria: The individual must be diagnosed with gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria is a condition in which a person experiences significant distress because their gender identity does not match their sex assigned at birth.
⦁ Mental health evaluation: The individual must have a mental health evaluation by a qualified mental health professional. The mental health professional will assess the individual’s mental health and make sure that they are ready for surgery.
⦁ Real-life experience: The individual must have lived in their gender identity for at least 12 months. This means that the individual must live as their gender identity in all aspects of their life, including at work, school, and socially.
** informed consent:** The individual must give informed consent for surgery. This means that the individual must understand the risks and benefits of surgery and must be willing to undergo the surgery.
The WPATH SOC also recommend that the individual have a minimum age of 18 years old for top surgery. However, the SOC also state that the decision of whether or not to operate on a minor is a complex one that should be made on a case-by-case basis.

The WPATH SOC are a set of guidelines, and not all healthcare providers will follow them exactly. However, the SOC are a good starting point for understanding the criteria that may be used to assess whether or not an individual is a good candidate for top surgery.

Here are some additional resources that you may find helpful:
⦁ The Trevor Project: A national organization that provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ youth.
⦁ GLAAD: An organization that works to promote acceptance of LGBTQ people.
⦁ Trans Lifeline: A hotline that provides support to transgender people in crisis.

The WPATH (World Professional Association for Transgender Health) Standards of Care, currently in its seventh version (WPATH SOC-7), provides guidelines for the medical and mental health professionals who work with transgender individuals. While I can’t provide an exhaustive summary of the guidelines, I can provide a brief overview specifically related to top surgery (chest masculinization or breast augmentation) for transgender individuals.

Here are some key points from the WPATH SOC-7:
⦁ Assessment and Referral: The WPATH guidelines recommend that individuals seeking top surgery undergo a comprehensive assessment by qualified healthcare professionals experienced in transgender healthcare. This includes a thorough evaluation of the individual’s physical and mental health, gender dysphoria, and readiness for surgery. Referrals from mental health professionals may be required, depending on local guidelines and healthcare systems.
⦁ Mental Health Support: The guidelines emphasize the importance of mental health support throughout the process. Mental health professionals play a critical role in assessing an individual’s readiness for top surgery, addressing any co-existing mental health concerns, and providing ongoing support during the pre-operative and post-operative phases.
⦁ Informed Consent: The WPATH SOC-7 recognizes the importance of informed consent, acknowledging that individuals who have capacity should be provided with clear and accurate information about the risks, benefits, and potential outcomes of top surgery. Informed consent is an ongoing process that involves collaborative decision-making between the individual and their healthcare provider.
⦁ Pre-operative Preparations: The guidelines suggest that pre-operative preparations should include discussions about surgical techniques, expected outcomes, risks, and possible complications. These discussions should also address expectations related to nipple-areola complex sensation and potential need for additional procedures, such as liposuction or revision surgery.
⦁ Surgical Techniques: The guidelines recognize various surgical techniques for top surgery, including double incision, periareolar, and keyhole. The specific technique used depends on the individual’s anatomy, breast size, and desired outcome. The guidelines also note the importance of individualized surgical planning and tailoring the procedure to the individual’s goals.
⦁ Post-operative Care: The guidelines stress the significance of post-operative care, which includes instructions for wound care, pain management, activity limitations, and the use of compression garments. Regular follow-up visits are encouraged to monitor healing, address complications, and assess the need for revisions.

It’s important to consult with healthcare professionals who are experienced in transgender healthcare and familiar with the WPATH SOC-7 guidelines. They can provide personalized guidance, discuss specific procedures and techniques, address individual concerns, and help ensure a safe and appropriate surgical plan based on your unique circumstances and goals.