Adam’s Apple Reduction (Tracheal Shave)

A plastic surgery procedure to reduce the prominence of the Adam’s apple.

Adam’s Apple Reduction

The Skinny


Average Recovery

2 weeks

Permanence

Temporary

Application

Surgical Procedure

Surgical

Yes

Cost

$3500 - $6000

The Specifics


What is an Adam’s apple reduction?

An Adam’s apple reduction surgery (a.k.a. tracheal shave surgery or chondrolaryngoplasty) reduces the protuberance and size of the Adam’s apple. This procedure is one of the most common facial feminization surgeries (FFS) for male to female (MTF) transgender individuals.

There are two approaches: direct and indirect. Many plastic surgeons state the indirect approach has a less noticeable scar as the incision is hidden under the chin, whereas in the direct approach the incision is over the thyroid cartilage and creates more scar tissue. The most appropriate technique for an individual patient can be determined through consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon.

What cosmetic concerns does an Adam’s apple reduction procedure treat?

  1. Adam’s Apple Prominence: The thyroid cartilage is responsible for the noticeable appearance of the Adam’s apple in men. For MTF candidates seeking facial feminization, shaving of this cartilage creates the softer feminine aesthetic.

Who is the ideal candidate for an Adam’s apple reduction procedure?

The ideal candidate for an Adam’s apple reduction is a male to female (MTF) transgender individual seeking to create their ideal aesthetic through a gender confirmation facial feminization procedure.

An Adam’s apple reduction is not recommended for individuals with certain chronic medical conditions, pre-existing head and neck pathologies, or uncontrolled active illness.

What is the average recovery associated with an Adam’s apple reduction procedure?

Most patients experience about two weeks of recovery time following an Adam’s apple reduction. Bruising, swelling, and tenderness typically resolves in this time. There may be some impacts on speech and swallowing for a few days following the procedure, although this varies by individual.

What are the potential side effects of an Adam’s Apple Reduction procedure?

Possible side effects following an Adam’s apple reduction include swelling, tenderness, bruising, bleeding, sore throat, difficulty swallowing (dysphagia), difficulty with speech (dysarthria), voice changes if the vocal cords (voice box) or larynx are affected, and altered sensation.

What can someone expect from the results of an Adam’s Apple Reduction procedure?

The results of an Adam’s apple reduction are permanent decreases in the protuberance and noticeability of the Adam’s Apple. This procedure is designed to assist MTF transgender individuals in their gender confirmation transition.

What is the average cost of an Adam’s apple reduction procedure?

An Adam’s apple reduction is a permanent surgical procedure that can cost anywhere from $3,500 to $6,000. The actual cost of the procedure is dependent upon location, surgeon, and length and involvement of the surgery.

Pros

Permanent

Cons

Potential scarring

Invasiveness Score

mildmoderatesevere
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Invasiveness is graded based on factors such as anesthesia practices, incisions, and recovery notes common to this procedure.

What to Expect


An Adam’s Apple Reduction decreases the prominence of the Adam’s Apple. Here is a quick guide for what to expect before, during, and after an Adam’s Apple Reduction.

The Takeaway


An Adam's apple reduction, or tracheal shave, is a common surgical procedure for transgender women as part of a facial feminization surgery. This procedure is designed to create a more feminine appearance by removing thyroid cartilage and reducing the noticeability of a prominent Adam's Apple.

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Source List

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AEDIT uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

  1. American Society of Plastic Surgeons Gender Confirmation Surgeries plasticsurgery.org
  2. Karel E Y Claes Chest Surgery for Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Individuals PubMed.gov; 2018-07-02
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