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Preparing for Transgender Surgery

We understand that the decision to have gender-affirming surgery is life changing. Our transgender healthcare team provides support and education to help you and your loved ones know what to expect throughout the gender-affirming surgery process.

As your surgical date approaches, we schedule one-on-one preoperative education visits with our nursing team. For those seeking genital surgery, we host classes with former patients who can share their experiences and introduce you to nurses and other staff who provide care in the hospital. Preoperative and postoperative photographs of procedure outcomes are available at the time of your surgical consultation. Referrals to mental health professionals who can support your emotional and physical wellbeing are also available.

Presurgical Requirements

There are certain requirements that need to be fulfilled before surgery, including surgical referral letters from mental health professionals and clinicians who provide hormone therapy; insurance authorization, which is done by our office; and hair removal for people having vaginoplasty or phalloplasty.

Surgical Referral Letters

Our surgeons follow the standards of care guidelines provided by the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH). This requires obtaining letters from your mental health professional and the clinician who managed your hormone therapy. We provide referrals to mental health professionals who can assist with letter writing and support your emotional wellbeing during this process. Here are suggestions for what to include in your surgery recommendation letter.

Insurance Authorization

Our office makes every effort to obtain insurance authorization after surgery has been scheduled. Please confirm that your insurance plan includes gender-affirming benefits before consultation. We offer a guide to verifying your health insurance benefits.

Occasionally, our efforts to authorize procedures are not successful even for those with gender-affirming surgery benefits, and in these instances we may refer patients to options for no- or low-cost legal assistance.

Hair Removal

If your surgical plan includes vaginoplasty or phalloplasty, permanent hair removal by either electrolysis or laser treatment is required before surgery. Please message us through your NYU Langone Health MyChart account for details on hair removal requirements.