Dr. Gallagher on FTM Top Surgery FTM (double incision / keyhole surgery)

Dr. Gallagher on FTM Top Surgery FTM (double incision / keyhole surgery)

A discussion with Dr. Gallagher about FTM top surgery FTM for transgender men both keyhole surgery and double incision chest surgery.

In a conversation with Dr. Gallagher, I asked her about her process with transmen getting chest surgery. I have captured that conversation in a question answer format here.

What types of procedures do you provide for transmen seeking chest surgery?

The three options for chest surgery are:  double incision procedure, keyhole surgery. and breast reduction.

Is there anything about your chest surgery that separates you from other surgeons?

The three most distinguishing features of ftm top surgery with Dr. Gallagher are:

  • No drains used in surgery, including larger transmen  (which means less pain and fewer complication rates)
  • Quick recovery post surgery regimen
    • Most patients can shower within 48 hours of their top surgery ftm
    • Typical return to most normal activities within a few days of procedure
    • Recovery care is very straight forward
  • Special effort to avoid “dog ears”
    • Dog ears are “pouches” of tissue which can be left behind when the breast tissue extends back around the patients sides.
    • Dr. Gallagher states, “We always do our best to take care of these at the first surgery.”

What determines whether transgender men have ftm top surgery using the double incision surgery, keyhole surgery or a breast reduction?

The three key variables affecting surgery style are, skin elasticity, chest size and preference.  According to Dr. Gallagher, if the patient has any “sagging” of the skin, the keyhole surgery is not advised.  The sagging skin will remain, creating a less desirable outcome. Chest size is another variable. Realistically transmen with a size A cup or small a small B should have a double incision procedure. A masculinized chest is of course not for everybody and some non-binary patients may prefer just a reduction, which can be accommodated also. Dr. Gallagher explained, “We will look at photos and determine what is right for each patient.”

Dr. Gallagher, Dr. O'Mara, Michele O'Mara

How long is the typical hospital stay post-chest surgery ftm?

Only about 10% of Dr. Gallagher’s top surgery patients require an overnight stay. All patients are afforded that option, but it is rarely necessary, unless there is travel involved.  Patients travelling in from out of town are advised to stay locally for first night after the surgery.

What is your surgical policy about smoking?

There is a strict policy of no smoking for 6 weeks before surgery.  Dr. Gallagher states that they will nicotine test and if the results are positive surgery will be cancelled.

How much recovery time does the typical patient need before returning to work?

Depending on the demands of their job, most patients will be able to return to work in 1-2 weeks. No heavy lifting for 4-6 weeks.

Do you take insurance?

Yes.  For information about benefit coverage and your out-of-pocket expense for top surgery with Dr. Gallagher, visit this article on Surgery, Insurance and Scheduling with Dr. Gallagher.

Do you have photos of BEFORE AND AFTER top surgery ftm?

ftm top surgeryftm top surgery ftm keyhole surgery chest surgery ftm top surgery dr. gallagher

Is there anything else you would like to share about ftm top surgery?

Dr. Gallagher said, “This is a very gratifying procedure for both surgeon and patient!”

There is a low complication rate even in larger patients. While a very small amount of breast tissue is left behind, a trans-man will never require a mammogram after the procedure. We will recommend you have a mammogram within one year before the surgery if over 40 or if there is a strong family history of breast cancer.

Do you require that a patient be on HRT (testosterone) to undergo top surgery ftm?

You do not have to be on testosterone to undergo top surgery.

Dr. Gallagher on FTM Top Surgery FTM (double incision / keyhole surgery) - Michele O'Mara

Meeting Dr. Gallagher: Indiana Surgeon GRS, Orchiectomy, FTM Top Surgery

Meeting Dr. Gallagher: Indiana Surgeon GRS, Orchiectomy, FTM Top Surgery

Meeting Dr. Gallagher: Indiana Surgeon for GRS / SRS, Orchiectomy and FTM Top Surgery 

Gallagher: Indiana Surgeon for GRS / SRS, Orchiectomy and ftm Top Surgery Indiana has been gifted with a new option for transgender folks seeking to align their bodies with their authentic gender.

Yesterday, I had the privilege to meet Dr. Sidhbh “Sive” Gallagher. She is an Indiana surgeon who specializes in gender affirming procedures such as: SRS / GRS, orchiectomy, and ftm top surgery.

From Ireland originally, she is a graduate of the University of College Dublin (in the top 3 percent of her class, I might add). She completed a general surgery residency at Abington Memorial Hospital in Pennsylvania. After which she came to Indiana University School of Medicine to complete her plastic surgery fellowship.  She did additional training in Australia and Belgium, too.

As an artist who enjoys drawing and painting, she considers plastic surgery art. In talking with her, she is not only passionate about the technical aspects of her surgical craft, she also has a keen sensitivity to, and appreciation for, the dramatic impact her surgeries have on her patient’s emotional, social and psychological well-being. While showing me some of her before and after photos of top surgeries, Dr. Gallagher commented on how incredible it is to see the relief her patients feel after receiving gender affirming procedures. She understands that this is not a procedure, it is a gender-validating, life-changing step for transmen and transwomen. I found Dr. Gallagher to be easy to talk to, and she has, what I call, “good energy.”

The two most requested surgeries by gender variant clients with whom I work, are ftm chest surgery and gender reassignment surgery (GRS). Prior to 2016, the closest surgeon providing ftm top surgery to transmen was Dr. Daniel Medalie in Cleveland, Ohio. This involved a six hour drive for most Indiana trans guys.

In her first year here, five of the transmen with whom I worked chose her to perform their chest surgery. Feedback I have received following surgery has be resoundingly positive.

As for SRS (vaginoplasty), the closest surgeon my clients could find for GRS was Dr. Christine McGinn in New Hope, PA.  That is a ten+ hour drive from Indiana, making the post-surgery drive or flight home very uncomfortable.

Last year, when the option to see Dr. Gallagher became available, I had a transfemale client ask me to refer to her for a vaginoplasty. In follow up communication with my client, she is also quite pleased with both her experience and the outcomes of her bottom surgery.

Finally, Indianapolis, Indiana is now providing SRS / GRS, orchiectomy and ftm top surgery.  What a gift.

To continue reading more about my visit with Dr. Gallagher, look for the following posts: