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Standards of Care for the Health of Transgender and Gender Diverse People, Version 8

Authors:
  • Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust and University of Nottingham

Abstract

Background: Transgender healthcare is a rapidly evolving interdisciplinary field. In the last decade, there has been an unprecedented increase in the number and visibility of transgender and gender diverse (TGD) people seeking support and gender-affirming medical treatment in parallel with a significant rise in the scientific literature in this area. The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) is an international, multidisciplinary, professional association whose mission is to promote evidence-based care, education, research, public policy, and respect in transgender health. One of the main functions of WPATH is to promote the highest standards of health care for TGD people through the Standards of Care (SOC). The SOC was initially developed in 1979 and the last version (SOC-7) was published in 2012. In view of the increasing scientific evidence, WPATH commissioned a new version of the Standards of Care, the SOC-8. Aim: The overall goal of SOC-8 is to provide health care professionals (HCPs) with clinical guidance to assist TGD people in accessing safe and effective pathways to achieving lasting personal comfort with their gendered selves with the aim of optimizing their overall physical health, psychological well-being, and self-fulfillment. Methods: The SOC-8 is based on the best available science and expert professional consensus in transgender health. International professionals and stakeholders were selected to serve on the SOC-8 committee. Recommendation statements were developed based on data derived from independent systematic literature reviews, where available, background reviews and expert opinions. Grading of recommendations was based on the available evidence supporting interventions, a discussion of risks and harms, as well as the feasibility and acceptability within different contexts and country settings. Results: A total of 18 chapters were developed as part of the SOC-8. They contain recommendations for health care professionals who provide care and treatment for TGD people. Each of the recommendations is followed by explanatory text with relevant references. General areas related to transgender health are covered in the chapters Terminology, Global Applicability, Population Estimates, and Education. The chapters developed for the diverse population of TGD people include Assessment of Adults, Adolescents, Children, Nonbinary, Eunuchs, and Intersex Individuals, and people living in Institutional Environments. Finally, the chapters related to gender-affirming treatment are Hormone Therapy, Surgery and Postoperative Care, Voice and Communication, Primary Care, Reproductive Health, Sexual Health, and Mental Health. Conclusions: The SOC-8 guidelines are intended to be flexible to meet the diverse health care needs of TGD people globally. While adaptable, they offer standards for promoting optimal health care and guidance for the treatment of people experiencing gender incongruence. As in all previous versions of the SOC, the criteria set forth in this document for gender-affirming medical interventions are clinical guidelines; individual health care professionals and programs may modify these in consultation with the TGD person.
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... We also highlight the role of medical providers in determining access to care, and how the intersectional nature of trans identity may impact access to and quality of medical care, as patients may be members of more than one marginalized group. Of note, a full discussion of gender-affirming medical interventions is beyond the scope of this article but we would refer readers to other excellent reviews previously published on this topic [9,26] as well as guidelines provided by World Professional Association of Transgender Health (WPATH SOC 8) and Endocrine Society [27,28] (Table 2). ...
... TGD people seeking hormone therapy would need to start with mental health treatment and "prove" their transgender status [26]. Current treatment standards suggest that adults starting hormone therapy meet the following criteria: persistent/consistent gender identity, capacity to consent to treatment, and that mental or physical health concerns are assessed and included in the discussion of risks and benefits [27,28]. This shift away from previous language in recommendations which required "reasonable" control of mental illness is notable, as historically gender-affirming care has been denied or delayed due to the presence of other psychiatric diagnoses [38]. ...
... This shift away from previous language in recommendations which required "reasonable" control of mental illness is notable, as historically gender-affirming care has been denied or delayed due to the presence of other psychiatric diagnoses [38]. However, new guidelines place the focus on reducing the barriers the psychiatric illness may place on accessing and engaging in gender affirming treatment [27]. This has direct implications for eating disorder treatment as it suggests gender affirming care should not wait until the patient is in recovery, but rather be pursued in parallel to their other treatment. ...
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Transgender and gender diverse (TGD) individuals are at increased risk for the development of eating disorders, but very little has been published with regards to the unique aspects of their medical care in eating disorder treatment. Providing gender affirming care is a critical component of culturally competent eating disorder treatment. This includes knowledge of gender affirming medical and surgical interventions and how such interventions may be impacted by eating disordered behaviors, as well as the role of such interventions in eating disorder treatment and recovery. TGD individuals face barriers to care, and one of these can be provider knowledge. By better understanding these needs, clinicians can actively reduce barriers and ensure TGD individuals are provided with appropriate care. This review synthesizes the available literature regarding the medical care of TGD patients and those of patients with eating disorders and highlights areas for further research.
... The transgender or trans and nonbinary (TGNB) community is comprised of individuals whose gender identity differs from the sex they were assigned at birth, including individuals who identify as woman, transgender woman, trans woman, man, transgender man, trans man, or as nonbinary (outside of the binary categories of man and woman). Similar to cisgender individuals (i.e., not TGNB), TGNB individuals may have several healthcare needs across their lifespan, including primary care, mental health services, substance use treatment, reproductive and sexual health care (e.g., fertility preservation, HIV/STI care), and, for many TGNB individuals, gender-affirming care (e.g., gender-affirming psychotherapy, hormone therapy, and surgery) (Becasen et al., 2019;Coleman et al., 2022;Edmiston et al., 2016;Gaither et al., 2022;Ziegler et al., 2020). ...
... TGNB individuals may be in need of a variety of mental health, primary and gender-affirming care and other health services, including urology, endocrinology, fertility preservation and assisted reproductive care (Becasen et al., 2019;Chen et al., 2016;Coleman et al., 2022;Edmiston et al., 2016;Gaither et al., 2022;Wylie et al., 2016). Given the complexity of these health needs, which may not be able to be managed in primary care, holistic care for TGNB individuals should involve interdisciplinary teams (Chen et al., 2016;Wylie et al., 2016;Ziegler et al., 2020). ...
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Background: Transgender and nonbinary (TGNB) individuals have diverse health needs and may face disproportionate barriers to healthcare, including developing positive patient-provider relationships. While there is mounting evidence of gender-based stigma and discrimination in healthcare, little is known about how TGNB individuals develop positive patient-provider relationships. Aims: To examine TGNB individuals’ interactions with healthcare providers and identify main characteristics of positive patient-providers relationships. Methods: We conducted semi-structured interviews with a purposive sample of 13 TGNB individuals in New York, NY. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed inductively for themes related to characteristics of positive and trusting relationships with healthcare providers. Results: Participants’ mean age was 30 years (IQR = 13 years) and most participants were nonwhite (n = 12, 92%). Receiving peer referrals to specific clinics or providers helped many participants find providers perceived to be competent and created initial grounds for positive patient-provider relationships. Providers with whom participants had positive relationships commonly managed primary care and gender-affirming care and relied on a network of interdisciplinary providers for other specialized care. Providers who were positively evaluated were perceived to possess in-depth clinical knowledge on the issues they were responsible for managing, including gender-affirming interventions, particularly for TGNB patients who perceived themselves to be knowledgeable about TGNB-specific care. Provider and staff cultural competence and a TGNB-affirming clinic environment were also important, particularly early in the patient-provider relationship, and if combined with TGNB clinical competence. Discussion: Provider-focused training and education programs should combine components of TGNB clinical and cultural competence to facilitate development of positive relationships between TGNB patients and providers, thereby improving the health and wellbeing of TGNB people.
... These services include psychological support, hormone therapy, and reconstructive surgeries. 6 Hormone therapy typically involves estrogens and anti-androgens for transgender women and other transfeminine people and testosterone for transgender men and other transmasculine people. Surgeries that may be part of gender affirmation for transgender people include genital surgeries, such as phalloplasty or vaginoplasty; gonadectomy; chest surgeries, including mastectomy or mammoplasty; and facial surgeries, particularly for transgender women. ...
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Many transgender people need specific medical services to affirm their gender. Gender-affirming health care services may include mental health support, hormone therapy, and reconstructive surgeries. Scant information is available about the utilization or costs of these services among transgender people, which hinders the ability of insurance regulators, health plans, and other health care organizations to plan and budget for the health care needs of this population and to ensure that transgender people can access medically necessary gender-affirming care. This study used almost three decades of commercial insurance claims from a proprietary database containing data on more than 200 million people to identify temporal trends in the provision of gender-affirming hormone therapy and surgeries and to quantify the costs of these services.
... The new WPATH SoC version 8, however, provides a new dedicated chapter for this population. That chapter includes recommendations for health professionals to offer medical and surgical intervention when there is a high risk that withholding treatment would lead to harm such as through self-injury, surgery by unqualified person, or unsupervised hormonal use (Coleman et al., 2022). ...
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Some men elect castration voluntarily without any clear medical reason. Here we aim to document their perception of genital ablation and injuries to better understand their motivations for castration. Participants completed an online survey with open-ended questions related to their perspectives on castration, genital ablation, and genital injuries. Thematic analyses were performed on the responses to these questions. Responses were obtained from 208 male castrated individuals (51.9 ± 16.0 years old). Among these, 154 were physically castrated, 36 chemically castrated, and 18 nullified (had testicles and penis removed). The majority learned about castration from media (55.8%) or animal castration (23.4%). The circumstances when they first wanted to be castrated varied greatly. Most (46.3%) wished to achieve an idealized self motivated by gender dysphoria, body integrity dysphoria, or wanting to be conspicuously non-sexual. The top themes we identified related to the respondents’ perceptions of the pros of genital ablation were physical appearance, psychological benefit (i.e., a “eunuch calm”), and being non-sexual. Conversely, themes related to the cons they saw in having no genitals ranged from no disadvantages to loss of sexual/reproductive capability. Some perceived performing genital injury as a step toward ultimate castration or nullification. The respondents similarly varied in whether they saw any loss in having non-functional testicles. Perceptions in this regard appeared to differ depending on whether the respondents were taking supplemental androgens post-castration. Motivations for castration vary greatly between individuals. Clinicians need to understand men’s diverse perceptions on castration in order to provide appropriate care for individuals with strong castration desire.
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Background: Pelvic pain is a common complaint among individuals assigned female at birth. However, few studies have explored pelvic pain among transmasculine patients on gender-affirming testosterone treatment, and most of these were performed in adult populations. Aims: The aim of our study was to investigate the prevalence, risk factors, nature and treatment of pelvic pain among trans adolescents on testosterone. Methods: A retrospective cohort study was performed on all trans adolescents started on gender-affirming testosterone treatment at our institution between 2007 and 2020. Results: Among 158 trans adolescents who were started on testosterone therapy and followed-up for at least six months, 37 (23.4%) reported pelvic pain, with a median interval between testosterone initiation and reported onset of pain of 1.6 months (range 0.3-6.4). The prevalence of pelvic pain was higher in patients who were receiving menstrual suppression (n = 36, 26.3%) compared to those who were not (n = 1, 4.8%), giving a risk difference of 21.5% (95% CI 9.8% to 33.2%, p = 0.028). The most common descriptive terms were “cramps” (n = 17, 45.9%) and “similar to previous period pain” (n = 8, 21.6%). A range of different pharmacological strategies were employed, including paracetamol, NSAIDs, danazol, norethisterone, medroxyprogesterone, etonogestrel implant, intra-uterine device, goserelin and pelvic floor physiotherapy, with variable outcomes. Conclusion: In conclusion, we report here – in what is to our knowledge the first time – the prevalence rate of pelvic pain in trans adolescents on gender-affirming testosterone treatment, and observe that a quarter of them described pelvic pain. Limitations of our study include its retrospective nature, which is likely to be associated with under-reporting of pelvic pain, and the limited documentation of the nature and likely causes of this pain within the medical records. Prospective longitudinal studies to better understand the nature, etiology and optimal management of testosterone-associated pelvic pain are therefore warranted.
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Aims: Feminizing gender-affirming hormone therapy (GAHT) can be utilized to help transfeminine transgender and gender diverse (TGD) individuals achieve the transformation of outward sex characteristics, thereby leading to improvements in psychological and social well-being. In this narrative review, we aim to summarize current guidelines for feminizing GAHT management as well as the available literature describing the associated health risks pertaining to cardiovascular disease, thromboembolic disease, bone health, and cancer risks. Methods: Relevant literature from January 2019 through July 2022 pertaining to feminizing GAHT was identified using PubMed, Cochrane Library, EMBASE, and MEDLINE. A narrative summary was performed with the inclusion of more recently published guidance from the World Professional Association for Transgender Health, Standards of Care Version 8. Results: Guidance regarding the prescribing of feminizing GAHT with estrogen, antiandrogen, and progesterone medications is summarized along with considerations of the cardiovascular, thromboembolic, bone health, and cancer risks associated with these therapies. Conclusions: Feminizing GAHT is a highly effective method for transfeminine TGD patients to achieve medically necessary changes in secondary sex characteristics. Knowledge of the health risks of feminizing GAHT is largely drawn from research in the cisgender population, with a growing body of literature in TGD-specific patient populations. Feminizing GAHT appears to carry a low risk profile for most patients; however, further research describing the risks of hormone management around the time of gender-affirming surgery and in the aging TGD population is needed to optimize GAHT in the context of the evolving health risks over a TGD patient's lifespan.
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A cohort of pediatric patients with gender dysphoria was studied to determine differences in gender-affirming care by patient characteristics. This study found that patients were diagnosed, on average, between 13 and 15 years of age. Patients who were assigned male sex at birth were more likely to be diagnosed at a younger age and receive puberty blockers as their first treatment, while those assigned female sex at birth were more likely to be diagnosed at an older age and start gender-affirming hormone therapy first. Patients who identified as female were more likely to receive any gender-affirming treatment than male-identifying or nonbinary patients. These findings characterize some of the many factors that impact the timing and type of care gender diverse patients receive. These data further our understanding of the pediatric gender diverse population and of their medical gender-affirming care needs.
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Background: Many transgender women and men undergo gender-affirming surgeries. Existing work shows that early surgery outcomes are generally positive, suggesting high surgical satisfaction and positive quality of life outcomes. Less work, however, examines these outcomes in the longer-term. Aims: To conduct a systematic literature review into the longer-term (i.e., ≥ 1 year) surgical satisfaction and quality of outcomes following various forms of gender-affirming surgery in transgender populations. Specifically, we aim to examine research on such outcomes at least one-year post gender-affirming chest, genital, facial, vocal cord, and Adam's apple removal surgeries. Methods: Studies were identified through Google Scholar, PsycINFO, Scopus, and PubMed databases, as well as through Google Scholar search alerts. We considered all studies published until October 2021. Two reviewers extracted data from suitable studies using Covidence. Both reviewers also independently assessed the identified studies' risk of bias and strength of evidence. Results: Seventy-nine low quality (e.g., small sample sizes, lack of control/comparison groups) studies suggest that most transgender patients are satisfied with surgical outcomes when assessed at least one-year post-surgery. Low quality research also indicates that transgender women and men typically report positive psychological and sexual wellbeing post-surgery, and similar wellbeing outcomes as those who have not had surgery. Discussion: To the best of our knowledge, this literature review is the first to critically summarize and evaluate all published studies on the longer-term quality of life outcomes following chest, genital, facial, voice and Adam's apple removal surgeries for transgender women and men. While the results suggest promising surgical satisfaction and quality of life outcomes following surgery, many studies only draw on small samples, and most studies do not allow for causal conclusions. Further, few studies have compared surgical outcomes between transgender women and men. We conclude by offering concrete suggestions for future research.
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BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES Concerns about early childhood social transitions amongst transgender youth include that these youth may later change their gender identification (i.e., retransition), a process that could be distressing. The present study aimed to provide the first estimate of retransitioning and to report the current gender identities of youth an average of 5 years after their initial social transitions. METHODS The present study examined the rate of retransition and current gender identities of 317 initially-transgender youth (208 transgender girls, 109 transgender boys; M=8.1 years at start of study) participating in a longitudinal study, the Trans Youth Project. Data were reported by youth and their parents through in-person or online visits or via email or phone correspondence. RESULTS We found that an average of 5 years after their initial social transition, 7.3% of youth had retransitioned at least once. At the end of this period, most youth identified as binary transgender youth (94%), including 1.3% who retransitioned to another identity before returning to their binary transgender identity. 2.5% of youth identified as cisgender and 3.5% as nonbinary. Later cisgender identities were more common amongst youth whose initial social transition occurred before age 6 years; the retransition often occurred before age 10. CONCLUSIONS These results suggest that retransitions are infrequent. More commonly, transgender youth who socially transitioned at early ages continued to identify that way. Nonetheless, understanding retransitions is crucial for clinicians and families to help make them as smooth as possible for youth.
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Purpose Although cross-sectional studies have demonstrated that trans people present with lower quality of life and wellbeing than the general population, few studies have explored the factors associated with this, particularly in those who have medically transitioned some time ago. This paper aims to fill the gap in the literature on what factors are associated with wellbeing in trans people who initiated medical transition some time ago. Methods This study used semi-structured one-to-one interviews with 23 participants to investigate the factors that impact upon the wellbeing of trans people who had initiated Gender Affirming Medical Treatment five or more years ago. The content of the interviews were analysed with an inductive, grounded theory approach to identify common themes within them. Results The four themes identified include some consistencies with cisgender populations (while being viewed through the lens of trans experience), as well as those more specific to the trans experience. Together these themes were : Interactions with healthcare services; Seeking societal acceptance; Quality of social support; The ‘double-edged sword’ of media and social media . Each of the themes identifies a factor that participants highlighted as impacting, either positively or negatively, on their wellbeing. Conclusions The results highlight the importance of social support, protective legislations, awareness of trans issues in the general public, and the need of improving the knowledge held by non-specialist healthcare providers.
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Importance: Transgender and nonbinary (TNB) youths are disproportionately burdened by poor mental health outcomes owing to decreased social support and increased stigma and discrimination. Although gender-affirming care is associated with decreased long-term adverse mental health outcomes among these youths, less is known about its association with mental health immediately after initiation of care. Objective: To investigate changes in mental health over the first year of receiving gender-affirming care and whether initiation of puberty blockers (PBs) and gender-affirming hormones (GAHs) was associated with changes in depression, anxiety, and suicidality. Design, setting, and participants: This prospective observational cohort study was conducted at an urban multidisciplinary gender clinic among TNB adolescents and young adults seeking gender-affirming care from August 2017 to June 2018. Data were analyzed from August 2020 through November 2021. Exposures: Time since enrollment and receipt of PBs or GAHs. Main outcomes and measures: Mental health outcomes of interest were assessed via the Patient Health Questionnaire 9-item (PHQ-9) and Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-item (GAD-7) scales, which were dichotomized into measures of moderate or severe depression and anxiety (ie, scores ≥10), respectively. Any self-report of self-harm or suicidal thoughts over the previous 2 weeks was assessed using PHQ-9 question 9. Generalized estimating equations were used to assess change from baseline in each outcome at 3, 6, and 12 months of follow-up. Bivariate and multivariable logistic models were estimated to examine temporal trends and investigate associations between receipt of PBs or GAHs and each outcome. Results: Among 104 youths aged 13 to 20 years (mean [SD] age, 15.8 [1.6] years) who participated in the study, there were 63 transmasculine individuals (60.6%), 27 transfeminine individuals (26.0%), 10 nonbinary or gender fluid individuals (9.6%), and 4 youths who responded "I don't know" or did not respond to the gender identity question (3.8%). At baseline, 59 individuals (56.7%) had moderate to severe depression, 52 individuals (50.0%) had moderate to severe anxiety, and 45 individuals (43.3%) reported self-harm or suicidal thoughts. By the end of the study, 69 youths (66.3%) had received PBs, GAHs, or both interventions, while 35 youths had not received either intervention (33.7%). After adjustment for temporal trends and potential confounders, we observed 60% lower odds of depression (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 0.40; 95% CI, 0.17-0.95) and 73% lower odds of suicidality (aOR, 0.27; 95% CI, 0.11-0.65) among youths who had initiated PBs or GAHs compared with youths who had not. There was no association between PBs or GAHs and anxiety (aOR, 1.01; 95% CI, 0.41, 2.51). Conclusions and relevance: This study found that gender-affirming medical interventions were associated with lower odds of depression and suicidality over 12 months. These data add to existing evidence suggesting that gender-affirming care may be associated with improved well-being among TNB youths over a short period, which is important given mental health disparities experienced by this population, particularly the high levels of self-harm and suicide.
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Background: While the importance of sexual pleasure for physical and mental health becomes increasingly evident, research on sexual pleasure in transgender persons is lacking. Recently, the first version of the Amsterdam Sexual Pleasure Index (ASPI Vol. 0.1) was validated in cisgender persons. This questionnaire aims to assess the tendency to experience sexual pleasure independent of gender, sexual orientation or anatomy. Aim: The aims of this study were threefold. First, to perform exploratory scale validation analyses of the ASPI in transgender persons. Secondly, to compare transgender sexual pleasure scores to reference data in cisgender persons. Finally, to identify factors that are associated with sexual pleasure. Methods: In a follow-up study conducted within the European Network for the Investigation of Gender Incongruence (ENIGI), online questionnaires were distributed to persons who had a first clinical contact at gender clinics in Amsterdam, Ghent or Hamburg four to six years earlier. Internal consistency of the ASPI was assessed by calculating McDonald’s omega (ωt). ASPI scores were compared to scores from the cisgender population using a one sample t-test, and linear regressions were conducted to study associations with clinical characteristics, psychological wellbeing, body satisfaction and self-reported happiness. Results: In total, 325 persons filled out the ASPI. The ASPI showed excellent internal consistency (ωt, all: 0.97; transfeminine: 0.97, transmasculine: 0.97). Compared to data from cisgender persons, transgender participants had significantly lower total ASPI scores (i.e., lower sexual pleasure; transgender vs. cisgender, mean(SD): 4.13(0.94) vs. 4.71(0.61)). Lower age, current happiness and genital body satisfaction were associated with a higher tendency to experience sexual pleasure. Conclusion & discussion: The ASPI can be used to assess the tendency to experience sexual pleasure and associated factors in transgender persons. Future studies are needed to understand interplaying biopsychosocial factors that promote sexual pleasure and hence transgender sexual health and wellbeing.
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Purpose Gender dysphoria is commonly conceptualized as a mental disorder in gender-diverse people who do not identify with the gender assigned to them at birth. Direct support for well-being tends to be delegated to the field of mental health (MH), whereas speech-language pathology (SLP) practice is charged with modifying gender-diverse people's voice and communication in the belief that well-being will improve as a byproduct. However, with the introduction of the minority stress model, gender dysphoria is now understood as the result of sociocultural processes of stigmatization, pathologization, coping, and resilience, and it is to be addressed by all professions providing transgender health services. The purposes of this tutorial are to examine practices in SLP in light of the current conceptualization of gender dysphoria and guide speech-language pathologists in their role in supporting the well-being of gender-diverse people. Method We reviewed the SLP and MH literature in the topic area to compare the two disciplines' conceptualizations and approaches to professional support for gender-diverse people. Results We propose a transdisciplinary, person-centered, and culturally responsive approach to SLP practice that directly attends to minority stress, microaggressions, coping skills, and resilience factors. Conclusions It is not sufficient for speech-language pathologists to delegate support for well-being in gender-diverse people to MH practitioners. Rather, speech-language pathologists need to be proactive in taking responsibility for supporting their clients' well-being based on each individual clinician's knowledge, skills, and capacity to do so. We recommend addressing barriers and facilitators of gender-diverse people's well-being both within SLP as a professional culture and by adapting the clinician's own professional practice.
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Defined as congenital conditions in which development of chromosomal, gonadal, or anatomic sex is atypical, differences or disorders of sex development (DSDs) comprise many discrete diagnoses ranging from those associated with few phenotypic differences between affected and unaffected individuals to those where questions arise regarding gender of rearing, gonadal tumor risk, genital surgery, and fertility. Controversies exist in numerous areas including how DSDs are conceptualized, how to refer to the set of conditions and those affected by them, and aspects of clinical management that extend from social media to legislative bodies, courts of law, medicine, clinical practice, and scholarly research in psychology and sociology. In addition to these aspects, this review covers biological and social influences on psychosocial development and adjustment, the psychosocial and psychosexual adaptation of people born with DSDs, and roles for clinical psychologists in the clinical management of DSDs. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, Volume 18 is May 2022. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.
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Background Gender-affirming and supportive relations for transgender youth are considered protective in terms of mental health. Aim To describe how transgender youth perceived changes in their gender expression, in the course of the gender-affirming path, and the effect of social connectedness and social support on depression and anxiety during the pandemic. Methods In this cross-sectional study, transgender youth completed an online survey developed to evaluate the perceived changes in gender expression and affirmation path that occurred during COVID-19 and the age-stratified lockdown. Furthermore, we aimed to investigate the effect of social connectedness and social support on depression and anxiety in this population during the pandemic. The participants completed the following scales: Social Connectedness Scale Revised (SCS-R), Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). The effect of lockdown on life conditions, gender expression, social and medical gender-affirming path, social connectedness, social support, depression, and anxiety levels were examined. Linear regression analyses were performed to evaluate the relationships between BDI and STAI scores and other variables. Outcomes The relationship between the levels of perceived social connectedness, and social support, the pandemic-related changes in living conditions and depression and anxiety scores were calculated. Results A total of 49 transgender youth with a mean age of 20.53 ± 1.86 years were enrolled. Participants reporting discomfort at the place they live and who had difficulties concerning gender expression and affirmation had higher depression and anxiety scores and perceived lower social support from their family. Social connectedness score was a significant negative predictor of depression severity, whereas social connectedness and social support were both significant negative predictors of anxiety severity. Clinical Implications Our results show increased adversity for transgender youth when connectedness with supportive people is diminished. During the COVID-19 pandemic, social connectedness and social support perceived by transgender youth are associated with better mental health. Strengths and Limitations This is one of the first studies to evaluate the changes that occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic in transgender youth with relation to social support and connectedness, during an age-stratified lockdown. The main limitations were the small study size, skewed gender ratio and that the study sample came from a single gender clinic. Conclusion As social connectedness and social support are significant predictors of depression and anxiety severity, special attention is needed to increase contact and support for transgender youth during the pandemic.