WASHINGTON, May 22 (Xinhua) -- Gender confirmation procedures saw a 20-percent rise from 2015 to 2016, with over 3,200 transfeminine and transmasculine surgeries performed last year, according to newly released data from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.
Dr. Loren Schechter, a board-certified plastic surgeon based in Chicago, said in a statement that the number of transgender patients had grown exponentially in the past several years.
The procedures can include anything from facial and body contouring to gender reassignment surgeries.
Access to gender confirmation procedures has improved in recent years.
"Access to care has allowed more people to explore their options, and more doctors understand the needs of transgender patients," said Dr. Schechter.
Members of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons undergo intense training to help these patients address the incongruity between their bodies and the gender they know themselves to be.
"Surgical therapy is one component of the overall care of the individual," said Dr. Schechter.
"It takes a team of experts across different disciplines working together to provide comprehensive care. I often partner with doctors who may prescribe treatments such as hormone therapy and mental health professionals who help patients through their transitions."
This is the first time the world's largest organization of board-certified plastic surgeons has reported the number of gender confirmation surgeries in the United States.