Guidelines Issued for Treating Transsexual Patients

Courtesy of Photobucket user stsh90 (Creative Commons)

Courtesy of Photobucket user stsh90 (Creative Commons)

From the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society, Washington:

On June 12, the Endocrine Society released its first clinical practice guidelines on the care of transgender patients. The release of the guidelines (Endocrine Treatment of Transsexual Persons) marks a major point in the recognition of the need for long-term medical care and the development of skills needed to care for such patients.

Multidisciplinary collaboration is essential in the care of transsexual persons because successful outcomes depend uniquely on the replacement of normal physiology as well as physical, social, and legal transformations, said Dr. Wylie C. Hembree, chair of the eight-member task force that wrote the guidelines. Dr. Hembree said that guidelines are necessary for several reasons.

First and foremost is the relatively large population that is in need of appropriate care. From 1973-2008, the average incidence of transsexualism has been estimated to be 1 of every 8,000 people born outwardly male and 1 of every 24,000 people born outwardly female. This totals about 4,000 adolescents and 25,000 adults in the United States, Dr. Hembree said.

“Although utilization of health care providers has come to the fore more so in reducing some of the risk behaviors of transsexual persons, it does not result in adherence to WPATH [World Professional Association for Transgender Health] standards or recommendations,” he said.

“Patients know more about their care, routinely, than do the doctors who are treating them.”

In addition, no medications are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of transsexualism.

–Jeff Evans (@jeffaevans on Twitter)

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Filed under Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism, Psychiatry, Surgery, Uncategorized

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