There is no strict definition on transgender surgery in the field of plastic surgery, but generally it refers to facial or body plastic surgeries before transgender patients decide to undergo the final change of genitals to achieve real male-to-female or female-to-male conversion, which does not retain organ functions. During this stage, patients still preserve concurrent partial male or female body features and genitals, but identify with the opposite gender, and their original gender cannot be told from their appearance and clothing; therefore, they are also called the “third gender.” In other words, generalized transgender surgery does include not only genital organ conversion but also body feature transformation, which should be undergone in the first step by a patient who wishes to become a transgender. However, because policies on sex identification have not been liberated in Taiwan, genital conversion surgery can only be conducted after long-term and strict physical and psychological evaluations and under the support of assessment reports of more than two physicians at the Department of Psychosomatics. Such a surgery generally cannot be performed in clinics other than teaching hospitals. Therefore, transgender surgeries at WiSH Clinic primarily target the converting of secondary sex characteristics on body and facial appearance of males and females but do not include genital organ changes.
Transgender plastic surgeries performed by Dr. Chuang are all-encompassing and mainly comprise the enhancement of male and female facial skeletal features, application of facial implants, hairline and forehead plastic surgeries, and male and female mammoplasties. Apart from genital organ conversions, almost all changes of female and male sex features can be completed by Dr. Chuang at WiSH clinic. However, despite being able to meet the expectations of the third gender, transgender surgery is an arduous road with no return. Dr. Chuang recommends that patients ascertain their gender identification before making their decision and bravely face social pressure to embrace their future life with confidence. The following aspects are critical to evaluate the success of transgender surgeries.