News and Blogs
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On Wednesday, January 25th, I took part in a BBC Radio 5 Live phone in for Your Call with Nicky Campbell (you can listen again here).
One caller asked a question which, as a cisgender woman, I felt unqualified to answer. As such, I reached out to some members of the trans community who, I felt should be offered the opportunity to address the point.
In negative media coverage of cases involving gender variant children, one statistic seems omnipresent:
‘84% of childhood cases of gender variance do not persist into adult life’.
The number of child counselling sessions about transgender issues and gender dysphoria offered by a national charity has reached a record level in the past year.
Kids as young as 11 have told counsellors they were unhappy with their assigned birth gender or felt their biological sex didn’t match their gender.
Rowan, 17, from Penarth in the Vale of Glamorgan, is a transgender female and first approached her GP two years ago but is still waiting to be referred to a gender identity specialist – a process that itself can take two years.
January 1st, 2017 will see ‘being transgender’ declassified as a mental illness in Denmark, a momentous and long-awaited move which will surely put increased pressure on the World Health Organisation (WHO), to remove the diagnosis from its list of mental disorders. (…)
As charities call for NHS to lower age limit of 16 for hormones, parents are taking their children to private clinics for treatment
August 2016 marks the 30th anniversary of the death of Harry Benjamin MD. His is not a name that immediately springs to mind in terms of either fame or notoriety. However, he has his place in history, and a remarkable one at that.
All my patients are the same on the inside.
Look past their outer layers and you will, more or less, find the same bones, body parts and cells.
The issues around excessive waiting times for transgender patients to be seen on the NHS have been widely publicised. Waiting times of up to a year and more have led many desperate people to take affirmative action, seeking expert support through private clinics. (…)
Last week, members of the transgender community were up in arms about the fact that a controversial psychiatrist, Dr Kenneth Zucker, was to be given a documentary on BBC2 from which to air his views on the treatment of gender variant children (BBC2 Thursday, 9pm This World, Transgender Kids: Who Knows Best.
Poor fitness levels could be a huge risk factor for developing depression, a new study has found.
Analysing data from more than one million people, researchers discovered that people with poor fitness levels had a 75% increased risk of developing the mental health condition.
Concerns have been raised about care for transgender people in Wales – with some waiting up to four years to see a specialist.
Wales currently does not have a Gender Identity Clinic (GIC), so people are referred to the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust in London.
I am a gender specialist and NHS GP. I set up www.gendergp.co.uk earlier this year to provide free advice to trans adults and parents of children suffering with gender identity disorder, seeking medical support. (…)
September 10th marks World Suicide Prevention Day, a day to reflect and reach out to those people who might be at risk or suffering in silence. Members of the transgender community are particularly vulnerable and awareness days such as this shine a much-needed spotlight on an issue which is rarely acknowledged, let alone discussed.
The event was well attended – double the expectations of the organisers – and the venue was amazing, it was lovely to be in the ‘partially sunny’ Amsterdam, a vibrant and accepting city.
A blog reflecting on a recent article in the Telegraph discussing the topic of sex change regret.
In the article Urologist, Miroslav Djordjevic, who specialises in Gender Reassignment Surgery (GRS), talks about his concerns around an increase in “reversal” surgeries among transgender women.
A statement provides guidance on contraceptive choices for transgender and non-binary people and their partners, who are engaging in vaginal sex where there is a risk of pregnancy. Dr Helen Webberley contributed to this article as an author.
As a doctor specialising in gender care, I offered to take part in the NSPCC debate to which she refers. I personally was not afraid to address issues relating to gender variance and answer questions (of which there are understandably many). Though I am fully aware that in taking this metaphorical bull by the horns I am opening myself up to personal attacks and professional scrutiny. This, however, is not my main concern. My main concern is the wellbeing of these children, who are extremely vulnerable.
On the 23rd of September 2016, the Welsh Government issued a Health Circular which updates General Practitioners and other primary care professionals on their roles and responsibilities in prescribing hormone therapy for trans adults.
A recent study by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) has suggested that nurses lack the necessary skills to treat transgender patients. In fact, this usually forward thinking and politically correct organisation is surprisingly critical of the nursing care afforded to transgender patients in the UK.
Gender variance is a complex condition affecting a small number of children whose biological sex differs from the gender by which they identify. Puberty blockers are a type of medication which temporarily stop the production of the natural sex hormones which progress puberty. (…)
The Guardian published a story on September 7th about a study which found that US doctors and therapists are struggling to give transgender patients the best medical care.
GPs are failing transgender patients with a lack of compassion and understanding that must change, according to Dr Helen Webberley.
As a doctor, specialising in the field of gender variance, I hear stories from patients every day that lead me to question the difference between our biological sex and the corresponding gender assigned to us at birth. Often the two are the same, but this is not always the case.
The importance of disclosure in gender specific screening A new information video, issued on behalf of Cancer Research UK, has been criticised for its use of trans inclusive language. The key issue revolves around the video’s reference to the importance of screening...read more
I have the best job in the world. I am a counsellor working with transgender people and my role is to help them make sense of their lives by putting meaning to their feelings around gender identity. I also identify as transgender which means that, while I am not for a...read more
Last week the Telegraph ran a piece which got me thinking. If what I saw was true then the our great nation needs to start acknowledging the fact that the number of people identifying on the gender spectrum is only going to grow. James Palmer, the medical director for...read more
More discussion in the media today on whether allowing freedom to express their gender in the way someone wants to will cause them untold harm........ Emotive wording such as 'children as young as 12.....', 'youngsters might be influenced to make a poorly informed...read more
Earlier this week, findings presented at the European Society of Endocrinology’s annual meeting in Barcelona, revealed that a series of scans may show variations in the brain activity and structure of patients with gender dysphoria. The suggestions are that rather...read more
Where are all the older transmen? Much is made in the media of the current crisis facing the mental health of some of our children, and rightly so. Self esteem is stated as being at an all time low, with social media and the non stop onslaught of always-on mobile...read more
Once again we see discussions in the media of young people with gender dysphoria resorting to ‘DIY-ing’. This is a concept I had not come across before working with transgender patients. The idea that someone would ‘buy’ medicines off the black market to treat their...read more
Sensationalist media headlines warn us that the health of hundreds of children is being put at risk by sex-change drugs doled out on the NHS. My question is whether in fact anyone has considered the notion that the healthcare h of hundreds of children is actually...read more
The availability of timely, compassionate healthcare provided by the NHS for transgender patients has been under scrutiny for some time. The NHS has been criticised for treating transgender people as second class citizens and failing to meet legal requirements under...read more
I am 61 years old this year. I have spent the last 55 years like this, not understanding for a great part of my life, who or what I am. It has been a life time of torturous battles, trying to conform to the image that looks back at me from the mirror, seeing a man,...read more