Gender Affirming Surgery: A Comprehensive, Systematic Review of All Peer-Reviewed Literature and Methods of Assessing Patient-Centered Outcomes (Part 1: Breast/Chest, Face, and Voice).
: To perform the first systematic review of all available gender-affirming surgery (GAS) publications across all procedures to assess both outcomes reported in the literature and the methods used for outcome assessment.Rapidly increasing clinical volumes of gender-affirming surgeries have stimulated a growing need for high-quality clinical research. While some procedures have been performed for decades, each individual procedure has limited data, necessitating synthesis of the entire literature to understand current knowledge and guide future research.A systematic review was performed following PRISMA guidelines to identify all outcomes measures in GAS cohorts, including PCOs, complications, and functional outcomes. Outcome data was pooled to assess currently reported complication, satisfaction, and other outcome rates.Overall, 15,186 references were identified, 4,162 papers advanced to abstract review, and 1,826 underwent full-text review. After review, there were 406 GAS cohort publications. Of non-genitoplasty titles, 35 were mastectomy, 6 mammoplasty, 21 facial feminization, and 31 voice/cartilage. While 59.1% of non-genitoplasty papers addressed PCOs in some form, only 4.3% used instruments partially-validated in transgender patients. Overall, data were reported heterogeneously and were biased towards high-volume centers.This study represents the most comprehensive review of GAS literature. By aggregating all previously utilized measurement instruments, this study offers a foundation for discussions about current methodologic limitations and what dimensions must be included in assessing surgical success. We have aggregated a comprehensive list of outcome instruments; this offers an ideal starting basis for emerging discussions between patients and providers about deficiencies which new, better instruments and metrics must address. The lack of consistent use of the same outcome measures and validated GAS-specific instruments represent the two primary barriers to high-quality research where improvement efforts should be focused.