Observer Gaze Patterns of Patient Photographs Before and After Facial Feminization

Nikita Gupta, Hannah White, Skylar Trott, Jeffrey H. Spiegel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background: Human interaction begins with visual evaluation of others, and this often centers on the face. Objective measurement of this evaluation gives clues to social perception. Objectives: The objective of this study was to use eye-tracking technology to evaluate if there are scanpath differences when observers view faces of cisgender men, cisgender women, and transgender women before and after facial feminization surgery (FFS) including when assigning tasks assessing femininity, attractiveness, and likability. Methods: Undergraduate psychology students were prospectively recruited as observers at a single institution. Their eye movements were recorded by eye-tracking technology when they were presented with frontal photographs of prototypical male, prototypical female, and pre- and post-FFS faces in a random order and then with prompting to assess femininity, attractiveness, and likability. Results: Twenty-seven observers performed the tasks. Participants focused their attention more on the central triangle of post-FFS and prototypical female images and on the forehead of pre-FFS and prototypical male images. Higher femininity ratings were associated with longer proportional fixations to the central triangle and lower proportional fixations to the forehead. Conclusions: This preliminary study implies the scanpath for viewing a post-FFS face is closer to that for viewing a prototypical female than a prototypical male based on differences viewing the forehead and brow vs the central triangle.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)725-732
Number of pages8
JournalAesthetic Surgery Journal
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s).

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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