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Plast Reconstr Surg. 2018 Nov;142(5):1125-1132. doi: 10.1097/PRS.0000000000004827.

Subcutaneous Mastectomy Improves Satisfaction with Body and Psychosocial Function in Trans Men: Findings of a Cross-Sectional Study Using the BODY-Q Chest Module.

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Amsterdam, The Netherlands; and Hamilton, Ontario, Canada From the Departments of Plastic, Reconstructive and Hand Surgery and Medical Psychology and Sexology, VU University Medical Center; and the Departments of Pediatrics and Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics, McMaster University.



The effectiveness of gender-confirming surgery is best evaluated on the basis of patient-reported outcomes. This is the first explorative study using the BODY-Q chest module, administered in trans men before and after mastectomy.


Between October of 2016 and May of 2017, trans men were recruited to participate in a cross-sectional study. Data collection included standardized anamnesis and examination, screening questions on depression/anxiety, and seven BODY-Q scales, including new scales measuring satisfaction of the chest and nipples. Mean scores for preoperative and postoperative participants were compared, and regression analyses were conducted to identify factors associated with BODY-Q scores.


In total, 101 persons participated (89 percent; 50 preoperatively and 51 postoperatively). Postoperative participants reported significantly higher (better) scores on the chest (67), nipple (58), body (58) (t tests, all p < 0.001), and psychological (60) (t test, p = 0.05) scales compared with preoperative patients. Postoperative chest and nipple mean scores did not differ significantly from a gynecomastia comparison, whereas scores were less favorable on the psychosocial domains. Preoperatively, chest scores were not associated with objective breast size. Lower postoperative chest scores were associated with planned revision surgery (β = -0.52) and depressive symptoms (β = -0.59).


The present findings indicate that chest and nipple satisfaction differences in trans men undergoing mastectomy can be detected using the BODY-Q chest module. Future prospective studies are needed to measure clinical change in satisfaction and how this relates to changes in other aspects of health-related quality of life.

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