Recent Submissions

  • Risk and protective factors for self-harm thoughts and behaviours in transgender and gender diverse people: A systematic review

    Arcelus, Jon (2024)
    BACKGROUND: Self-harm (any self-injury or -poisoning regardless of intent) is highly prevalent in transgender and gender diverse (TGD) populations. It is strongly associated with various adverse health and wellbeing outcomes, including suicide. Despite increased risk, TGD individuals' unique self-harm pathways are not well understood. Following PRISMA guidelines we conducted the first systematic review of risk and protective factors for self-harm in TGD people to identify targets for prevention and intervention. METHODS: We searched five electronic databases (PubMed, PsychInfo, Scopus, MEDLINE, and Web of Science) published from database inception to November 2023 for primary and secondary studies of risk and/or protective factors for self-harm thoughts and behaviours in TGD people. Data was extracted and study quality assessed using Newcastle-Ottawa Scales. FINDINGS: Overall, 78 studies published between 2007 and 2023 from 16 countries (N = 322,144) were eligible for inclusion. Narrative analysis identified six key risk factors for self-harm in TGD people (aged 7-98years) were identified. These are younger age, being assigned female at birth, illicit drug and alcohol use, sexual and physical assault, gender minority stressors (especially discrimination and victimisation), and depression or depressive symptomology. Three important protective factors were identified: social support, connectedness, and school safety. Other possible unique TGD protective factors against self-harm included: chosen name use, gender-identity concordant documentation, and protective state policies. Some evidence of publication bias regarding sample size, non-responders, and confounding variables was identified. INTERPRETATION: This systematic review indicates TGD people may experience a unique self-harm pathway. Importantly, the risk and protective factors we identified provide meaningful targets for intervention. TGD youth and those assigned female at birth are at increased risk. Encouraging TGD people to utilise and foster existing support networks, family/parent and peer support groups, and creating safe, supportive school environments may be critical for self-harm and suicide prevention strategies. Efforts to reduce drug and alcohol use and experiences of gender-based victimisation and discrimination are recommended to reduce self-harm in this high-risk group. Addressing depressive symptoms may reduce gender dysphoria and self-harm. The new evidence presented in this systematic review also indicates TGD people may experience unique pathways to self-harm related to the lack of social acceptance of their gender identity. However, robust longitudinal research which examines gender-specific factors is now necessary to establish this pathway.
  • 'I didn't have the language then'-a qualitative examination of terminology in the development of non-binary identities

    Thorne, Nat; Aldridge, Zoe; Bouman, Walter P.; Marshall, Ellen; Arcelus, Jon (2023)
    INTRODUCTION: Identities that lie outside of exclusively male and female, such as non-binary and genderqueer, have become increasingly more prevalent and visible within recent years. However, to date, the role of terminology in the development of such gender identities has been under-researched. This study aims to: (1) Examine what role terminology plays in coming to identify as non-binary. (2) Explore the continuing importance of terminology once a non-binary identity is established. METHODS: This study uses thematic analysis on data produced from interviews with 16 participants who self-selected for the study and were recruited from several transgender and LGBTQ+ organisations on the basis that they identified outside the gender binary of male and female. RESULTS: The analysis uncovered several key themes and sub-themes relating to terminology choice, encountering new terms and the process of identifying with new terminology, as well as becoming visible and understood by others. CONCLUSIONS: This study found that terminology is not only central in coming to identify as something other than exclusively male and female, it also remains an important factor when it comes to making a non-binary identity visible to others.
  • A Longitudinal study exploring the role of mental health symptoms and social support regarding life satisfaction 18 months after initiation of gender-affirming hormone treatment

    Aldridge, Zoe; Thorne, Nat; Bouman, Walter P.; Arcelus, Jon (2023)
    While positive changes in mental health have been found following gender-affirming hormone treatment (GAHT), it is unclear how pre-GAHT mental health and social support can influence treatment outcomes. To address this, a retrospective longitudinal design was used in which 137 participants completed measures of social support, anxiety, and depression prior to GAHT (T0) and a measure of life satisfaction 18 months after GAHT (T1). The data showed no significant differences in life satisfaction at T1 based on T0 caseness of anxiety or depression. It was also found that T1 life satisfaction was not predicted by levels of anxiety, depression, or social support at T0. The lack of significant differences in life satisfaction at 18 months post-GAHT based on pre-GAHT mental health, coupled with no evidence for the predictive role social support suggest that these factors are not central to long-term life satisfaction. For many, lower mental wellbeing may be part of the experience of awaiting GAHT and should not be regarded as indicative of longer-term issues. Instead, facilitation of social support connections and mental health support should be offered both concurrently with, and for those awaiting, GAHT.
  • Understanding factors that affect wellbeing in trans people "later" in transition: a qualitative study

    Aldridge, Zoe; Thorne, Nat; Marshall, Ellen; English, Cara; Yip, Andrew K. T.; Nixon, Elena; Bouman, Walter P.; Arcelus, Jon (2022)
    PURPOSEAlthough 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.METHODSThis 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.RESULTSThe 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.CONCLUSIONSThe 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.
  • Identifying coping strategies used by patients at a transgender health clinic through analysis of free‐text autobiographical narratives

    Bouman, Walter P.; Arcelus, Jon (2021)
    Background This paper presents an analysis of 32 narratives written by patients waiting for assessment at a transgender health clinic (THC) in England. Narratives are autobiographical free texts, designed to allow patients to describe in their own words their experiences of their gender identity and/or transition prior to a clinic appointment, as part of the assessment process. Objective Narratives were analysed to identify actions prospective patients had taken to manage their (usually lengthy) waiting times, so that these ‘coping strategies’ could be shared with future patients. Design Corpus linguistic methodology was utilized to identify common patterns across the whole corpus of text‐based data, augmented with more detailed sociolinguistic analysis of individual narratives. Results There are broad commonalities in the way the transition experience is described across the corpus in terms of presentation of key experiences and feelings. There are specific descriptions of a number of recurring coping strategies, both positive and negative. Conclusion The empowerment value of writing these narratives may be limited; the existence of recurring key features suggests that patients may feel they have to present their experiences in certain ways to be accepted for treatment. However, dissemination of some positive coping strategies may help future clients of THCs to better cope with waiting times, as well as assisting practitioners in THCs in supporting their patients during this wait. Patient/Public Contribution The clinic's Service Users’ Research Advisory Group contributed to formulating the objective and design of the study. Results were presented at the clinic's annual PPI conference. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2021 APA, all rights reserved) (Source: journal abstract)
  • The quality and satisfaction of romantic relationships in transgender people: A systematic review of the literature

    Marshall, Ellen; Glazebrook, Cris; Robbins-Cherry, Sally; Thorne, Nat; Arcelus, Jon (2020)
    Introduction: Romantic relationships are often a significant area of individuals’ lives and can have a positive impact on wellbeing. There is often a belief within society of romantic relationships ending upon the start of gender affirming transition, however this is often not reflected within clinical work or research studies. Despite this, currently not enough is known about romantic relationships for transgender individuals and their partners, and the impact gender affirming transition can have on the quality and satisfaction of these relationships. Aim: To critically and systematically review the available literature examining quality and satisfaction of romantic relationships for transgender individuals and their partners. Methods: Using PRISMA guidelines, major databases (Pubmed, PsycINFO and Web of Science) and relevant reference lists were searched for suitable articles up to January 2020. Each included article was assessed for methodological quality and the demographic data, methods and findings linked to relationship quality and satisfaction was extracted for analysis. Results: From 151 potentially relevant articles, 14 studies (six quantitative, eight qualitative) were included within the review. Most studies displayed moderate risk of bias due to cross-sectional designs and lack of reflexivity. Findings from quantitative studies suggest a bi-directional relationship between transition, relationship quality and satisfaction and wellbeing. Qualitative studies suggest transition can cause personal challenges for both transgender individuals and partners. Maintenance activities help buffer the impact of these challenges on relationship satisfaction and ensure positives are possible from relationships. Discussion: Gender affirming transition can impact on the quality and satisfaction of romantic relationships. Due to additional challenges transgender individuals and their partners may face, adequate support is required at personal, community and clinical level. There is a paucity of research in this area and current studies lack methodological rigor. Future research is essential to gain a further understanding of transgender relationships and the support required. © 2020 The Author(s). Published with license by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.
  • The stability of autistic traits in transgender adults following cross-sex hormone treatment

    Nobili, Anna; Glazebrook, Cris; Bouman, Walter P.; Arcelus, Jon (2020)
    Background: Recent research has shown that a high percentage of treatment-seeking transgender adults who were assigned female at birth (AFAB) reported scores above the clinical cutoff for autistic traits. It is unclear whether those scores reflect a stable trait or may be inflated by the high levels of anxiety typically associated with transgender people attending clinical services.Aims: This longitudinal study aims to explore the impact of Cross-sex Hormone Treatment (CHT) on levels autistic traits, independent of changes in anxiety.Method: Transgender adults who were assessed at a national transgender health service in the UK, who had not previously received CHT and who had completed the AQ-Short as a measure of autistic traits pre- and one-year post-CHT were included in the study (n = 118). Anxiety was assessed at the same time points using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale.Results: AQ-Short scores remained very stable over time (ICC = 0.7; CIs 0.591-0.779) but anxiety showed little consistency (ICC = 0.386; CIs 0.219 to 0.531). Repeated measures ANOVA found a main effect of assigned sex with AFAB having higher AQ-Short scores. There was no change in AQ-Short scores and no significant interaction between assigned sex and change in AQ-Short scores.Conclusion: This study confirmed that treatment seeking transgender AFAB people have higher levels of autistic traits at follow-up compared to AMAB transgender people and that these traits are stable following one year of CHT regardless of assigned sex. This may have clinical implications regarding the support that transgender people may require following medical transition. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved) (Source: journal abstract)
  • Long term effect of gender affirming hormone treatment on depression and anxiety symptoms in transgender people: A prospective cohort study

    Aldridge, Zoe; Patel, Shireen; Guo, Boliang; Nixon, Elena; Bouman, Walter P.; Arcelus, Jon (2020)
    BACKGROUNDCross-sectional studies show that transgender people are more likely than cisgender people to experience depression and anxiety before Gender Affirming Hormone Treatment (GAHT). However, the effect of GAHT on mental health in transgender people, and the role of other factors that may have a predictive effect, is poorly explored.OBJECTIVESUsing a longitudinal methodology, this study investigated the effect of 18 months GAHT on depression and anxiety symptomatology and the predictors on mental health outcomes in a large population of transgender people.MATERIALS AND METHODSParticipants (n=178) completed a socio-demographic questionnaire, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS) and the Autism Spectrum Quotient Short Version (AQ-short) at pre-assessment (T0) and at 18 months after initiation of GAHT (T1).RESULTSFrom T0 to T1, symptomatology was significantly decreased for depression (P <0.001) and non-significantly reduced for anxiety (P=0.37). Scores on the MSPSS predicted reduction in depression, while scores on the AQ-short predicted reduction in anxiety.DISCUSSIONGAHT reduces symptoms of depression which are predicted by having higher levels of social support. Although anxiety symptoms also reduce the changes are not significant and high levels of anxiety still remain post GAHT.CONCLUSIONSThese results highlight the important mental health benefits of GAHT. Support services (professional, third sector or peer-support) aiming at increasing social support for transgender individuals should be made available.
  • European Society for Sexual Medicine position statement “Assessment and hormonal management in adolescent and adult trans people, with attention for sexual function and satisfaction”

    Arcelus, Jon (2020)
    Background: There is a general lack of recommendations for and basic information tailored at sexologists and other health-care professionals for when they encounter trans people in their practice. Aim: We present to clinicians an up-to-date overview of clinical consensus statements on trans health care with attention for sexual function and satisfaction. Methods: The task force consisted of 7 clinicians experienced in trans health care, selected among European Society for Sexual Medicine (ESSM) scientific committee. The consensus was guided by clinical experience and a review of the available literature and by interactive discussions on trans health, with attention for sexual function and satisfaction where available. Outcomes: The foci of the study are assessment and hormonal aspects of trans health care. Results: As the available literature for direct recommendations was limited, most of the literature was used as background or indirect evidence. Clinical consensus statements were developed based on clinical experiences and the available literature. With the multiple barriers to care that many trans people experience, basic care principles still need to be stressed. We recommend that health-care professionals (HCPs) working with trans people recognize the diversity of genders, including male, female, and nonbinary individuals. In addition, HCPs assessing gender diverse children and adolescents should take a developmental approach that acknowledges the difference between prepubescent gender diverse children and pubescent gender diverse adolescents and trans adults. Furthermore, trans people seeking gender-affirming medical interventions should be assessed by HCPs with expertise in trans health care and gender-affirming psychological practice. If masculinization is desired, testosterone therapy with monitoring of serum sex steroid levels and signs of virilization is recommended. Similarly, if feminization is desired, we recommend estrogens and/or antiandrogen therapy with monitoring of serum sex steroid levels and signs of feminization. HCPs should be aware of the influence of hormonal therapy on sexual functioning and satisfaction. We recommend HCPs be aware of potential sexual problems during all surgical phases of treatment. Clinical Implications: This is an up-to-date ESSM position statement. Strengths & Limitations: These statements are based on the data that are currently available; however, it is vital to recognize that this is a rapidly changing field and that the literature, particularly in the field of sexual functioning and satisfaction, is limited. Conclusion: This ESSM position statement provides relevant information and references to existing clinical guidelines with the aim of informing relevant HCPs on best practices when working with transgender people. T'Sjoen G, Arcelus J, De Vries ALC, et al. European Society for Sexual Medicine Position Statement “Assessment and Hormonal Management in Adolescent and Adult Trans People, With Attention for Sexual Function and Satisfaction”. J Sex Med 2020;17:570–584. © 2020 International Society for Sexual Medicine
  • Examining risk factors for self-harm and suicide in LGBTQ+ young people: a systematic review protocol

    Arcelus, Jon (2019)
    INTRODUCTIONYoung people who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning (LGBTQ+) are at increased risk for self-harm, suicide ideation and behaviours. However, there has yet to be a comprehensive understanding of what risk factors influence these behaviours within LGBTQ+ young people as a whole. The purpose of this systematic review is to examine risk factors associated with self-harm, suicidal ideation and behaviour in LGBTQ+) young people.METHODS AND ANALYSISA systematic review will be conducted, conforming to the reporting guidelines of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses statement recommendations. Electronic databases (MEDLINE, Scopus, EMBASE, PsycINFO and Web of Science) will be systematically searched for cross-sectional, prospective, longitudinal, cohort and case-control designs which examine risk factors for self-harm and/or suicidal ideation and behaviour in LGBTQ+ young people (aged 12-25 years). Only studies published in English will be included. No date restrictions will be applied. Study quality assessment will be conducted using the original and modified Newcastle-Ottawa Scales. Meta-analysis or narrative synthesis will be used, dependent on findings.ETHICS AND DISSEMINATIONThis is a systematic review of published literature and thereby ethical approval was not sought. The review will be submitted to a peer-reviewed journal, be publicly disseminated at conferences focusing on mental health, self-harm and suicide prevention. The findings will also be shared through public engagement and involvement, particularly those related to young LGBTQ+ individuals.PROSPERO REGISTRATION NUMBERCRD42019130037.
  • The terminology of identities between, outside and beyond the gender binary - a systematic review

    Thorne, Nat; Bouman, Walter P.; Marshall, Ellen; Arcelus, Jon (2019)
    Background: Recently, a multitude of terms have emerged, especially within North America and Western Europe, which describe identities that are not experienced within the culturally accepted binary structure of gender which prevails within those cultures. As yet, there is no clear single umbrella term to describe such identities and a mixture of words have been used in scholarly work to date.Aims: To explore the origins and track the emergence of newer terms and definitions for identities between, outside and beyond the gender binary, to outline current trends in descriptors within scholarly work and to suggest a term which is wide enough to encompass all identities.Methods: A comprehensive systematic review was made, following the PRISMA guidelines. Several relevant key terms were used to search Web of Science, ScienceDirect, PubMed, and the International Journal of Transgenderism. The descriptions each title gives for identities outside of the binary are extracted for analysis.Results: Several terms have been used over the years to describe identities outside of the binary. “Non-binary” and “genderqueer” are currently mostly used as umbrella terms. However, “gender diverse” is emerging as a more suitable wide-ranging inclusive term for non-male and non-female identities.Discussion: Identity outside of “male” and “female” is an emerging concept which currently has several identifiers and little academic agreement on which is the most pertinent. The two leading descriptors are “non-binary” and “genderqueer.” Gender diverse is emerging as a new term which has the aim of including all other terms outside of male and female within it and this article suggests the increase in its use to describe gender identities outside of the binary. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved) (Source: journal abstract)
  • Transforming the paradigm of nonbinary transgender health: A field in transition

    Bouman, Walter P. (2019)
    This is an editorial in the International Journal of Transgenderism
  • Mental health and quality of life in non-binary transgender adults: A case control study

    Jones, Bethany A.; Bouman, Walter P.; Arcelus, Jon (2019)
    AbstractBackground: The social challenges that non-binary people experience, due in part to social intolerance and the lack of validation of non-binary gender identities, may affect the mental health and quality of life of this population. However, studies that have distinguished between non-binary and binary transgender identities are lacking.Aim: To compare the mental health and quality of life of a community sample of non-binary transgender adults with controls (binary transgender people and cisgender people) matched on sex assigned at birth.Method: A total of 526 participants were included. Ninety-seven were classified as non-binary and were compared with two control groups: 91 people classified as binary and 338 cisgender people. Only transgender people not on gender affirming hormone treatment or who had not undergone gender affirming surgery were included. Participants were invited to complete an online survey that included mental health and quality of life measures.Results: Non-binary people reported significantly better mental health than binary transgender people, but worse than cisgender people. Overall, there were no significant differences in quality of life between non-binary and binary transgender participants assigned male at birth and transgender females, but non-binary assigned males at birth had better scores on the psychological and social domains of quality of life than transgender males. Quality of life was better across all domains in cisgender people than transgender groups.Conclusion: There is an inequality with regard to mental health and quality of life between non-binary (and binary) transgender people and the cisgender population that needs to be addressed. The better mental health scores in non-binary people may reflect lower levels of body dissatisfaction among the non-binary population. Mental health problems and poor quality of life are likely to have social causes and hence legislative measures and broader government-led inclusive directives should be put in place to recognize and to validate non-binary identifying people.
  • Experiences and psychological wellbeing outcomes associated with bullying in treatment-seeking transgender and gender-diverse youth

    Bouman, Walter P.; Nixon, Elena; Arcelus, Jon (2019)
    Purpose: Bullying in the adult transgender population is well documented, but less is known about bullying in transgender and gender-diverse (TGD) youth. Studies have begun to explore experiences of bullying and the associated psychological distress in TGD youth; however, they often fail to distinguish among the separate groups within LGBT samples. This study sought to explore the prevalence, nature, and outcomes of bullying in TGD youth attending a transgender health service in the United Kingdom, taking into account birth-assigned sex and out and social transition status. Methods: Before their first appointment at a specialist gender clinic, participants completed a brief sociodemographic questionnaire, a questionnaire assessing experiences and outcomes of bullying, and a clinically validated measure of anxiety and depression (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale). Results: A total of 274 TGD people aged 16-25 years participated in the study. The majority of participants (86.5%) reported having experienced bullying, predominantly in school. Bullying was more prevalent in birth-assigned females and in out individuals, and commonly consisted of homophobic/transphobic (particularly in socially transitioned individuals) or appearance-related (particularly in out individuals) name calling. Individuals who reported having experienced bullying showed greater anxiety symptomology and also self-reported anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem as effects of bullying. Birth-assigned females also reported greater effects on family relationships and social life. Conclusion: These findings indicate very high levels of bullying within the young TGD population attending a transgender health service in the United Kingdom, which affects wellbeing significantly. More intervention work and education need to be introduced in schools to reduce bullying.
  • Taiwanese speech–language therapists’ awareness and experiences of service provision to transgender clients

    Georgiadou, Ioanna (2019)
    AbstractBackground: One of the most influential factors that affect the quality of life of transgender individuals is whether they can be perceived by others to ?pass? in their felt gender. Voice and communication style are two important identifying dimensions of gender and many transgender individuals wish to acquire a voice that matches their gender. Evidence shows that few transgender individuals access voice therapy, and that this is caused by their concerns about stigmatization or negative past experiences within healthcare services. In order to address the negative experiences faced by transgender populations we need a better understanding of healthcare services? current levels of knowledge and LGBT awareness. Some studies of Speech?Language Therapists? (SLTs?) experience and confidence working with transgender individuals have recently been undertaken in the United States (US). However, little research has been carried out in Asia.Aims: To investigate Taiwanese SLTs? knowledge, attitudes and experiences of providing transgender individuals with relevant therapy.Method: A cross-sectional self-administered web-based survey hosted on the Qualtrics platform was delivered to 140 Taiwanese SLTs.Results: Taiwanese SLTs were, (i) more familiar with the terminology used to address ?lesbian, gay, and bisexual groups? than with ?transgender? terminology, (ii) generally positive in their attitudes toward transgender individuals, and (iii) comfortable about providing clinical services to transgender clients. However, the majority of participants did not feel that they were sufficiently skilled in working with transgender individuals, even though most believed that providing them with voice and communication services fell within the SLT scope of practice.Conclusion: It is important for clinicians to both be skilled in transgender voice and communication therapy and to be culturally competent when providing services to transgender individuals. This study recommends that cultural competence relating to gender and sexual minority groups should be addressed in SLTs? university education as well as in their continuing educational programs.
  • SAT-014 No correlation between serum testosterone levels and aggresion or anger intensity in transgender people: Results from five European centres

    Arcelus, Jon; Bouman, Walter P.; Brewin, Nicola (2019)
    AIM: Anger is a state of emotions ranging from irritation to intense rage. Aggression is the externalization of anger through destructive/punitive behaviour. The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) Standards of Care, Edition 7 (SOC7) guidelines warn about aggression in transgender men (TM) on testosterone treatment. We aimed to assess whether aggression and anger intensity increase in TM and decrease in transgender women (TW) after initiation of gender affirming hormone therapy and to identify predictors for anger intensity in transgender people, including levels of sex steroids as well as psychological measurements. METHODS: Prospective changes in aggression were measured at baseline and after one year of gender affirming hormones in 155 transgender persons (64 TM, 91 TW), using the Inventory of Interpersonal Problems (IIP-32) factor ‘too aggressive’. State-level anger intensity was prospectively assessed in 898 participants (440 TM, 468 TW) by the STAXI-2 (State-Trait Anger Expression Inventory-2) State Anger (S-Anger) questionnaire during a three-year follow-up period, starting at the initiation of hormone treatment (testosterone in TM, oestrogens plus anti-androgens in TW). At baseline, psychological questionnaires were administered. Data were analysed cross-sectionally and prospectively. RESULTS: No prospective changes were reported in ‘too aggressive’ scores (after one year of hormone therapy) and S-Anger scores (over 3, 12 and 36 months of hormone therapy) in TM and TW. ‘Too aggressive’ scores were positively correlated to increasing anxiety scores in the entire study population and with lower support from friends in TW. At three, twelve and thirty-six months of gender affirming hormone therapy, anger intensity was not correlated to serum testosterone levels, although there was a correlation with various psychological measures after three and twelve months. TM experiencing menstrual spotting after three months had higher S-Anger scores compared to those without (median 26.5 [18.0 - 29.8] versus 15.0 [15.0 - 17.0], P=0.020). Changes in STAXI-2 S-Anger scores were not correlated to changes in serum testosterone levels after three, twelve and thirty-six months in TM or TW. CONCLUSIONS: Aggression and state-level anger intensity are associated with psychological and/or psychiatric vulnerability or the persistence of menses in TM, but not with exogenous testosterone therapy in TM or serum testosterone levels in both TM and TW.
  • Gender congruence and body satisfaction in nonbinary transgender people: A case control study

    Jones, Bethany A.; Bouman, Walter P.; Arcelus, Jon (2019)
    Background: Binary transgender people access gender affirming medical interventions to alleviate gender incongruence and increase body satisfaction. Despite the increase in nonbinary transgender people, this population are less likely to access transgender health services compared to binary transgender people. No research has yet understood why by exploring levels of gender congruence and body satisfaction in nonbinary transgender people. Objective: The aim of this study was to compare levels of gender congruence and body satisfaction in nonbinary transgender people to controls [binary transgender people and cisgender (nontrans) people]. Method: In total, 526 people from a community sample in the UK took part in the study (97 nonbinary, 91 binary, and 338 cisgender identifying people). Participants were asked to complete an online survey about gender congruence and body satisfaction. Results: There were differences in gender congruence and body satisfaction between nonbinary and binary transgender people. On sex-specific parts of the body (i.e., chest, genitalia, and secondary sex characteristics), nonbinary transgender people reported significantly higher levels of gender and body satisfaction compared to binary transgender people. However, there was no difference in congruence and satisfaction with social gender role between the two transgender groups (nonbinary and binary). Cisgender people reported significantly higher levels of gender congruence and body satisfaction compared to transgender people (nonbinary and binary). Conclusions: There are differences in gender congruence and body satisfaction between nonbinary and binary transgender people. Nonbinary individuals may be less likely to access transgender health services due to experiencing less gender incongruence and more body satisfaction compared to binary transgender people. Transgender health services need to be more inclusive of nonbinary transgender people and their support and treatment needs, which may differ from those who identify within the binary gender system. © 2019, © 2019 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.
  • Endocrinology of transgender medicine

    Arcelus, Jon (2018)
    Gender affirming treatment for transgender people requires a multidisciplinary approach in which endocrinologists play a crucial role. The aim of this paper is to review recent data on hormonal treatment of this population and its effect on physical, psychological and mental health. The Endocrine Society guidelines for transgender women include estrogens in combination with androgen lowering medications. Feminizing treatment with estrogens and anti-androgens has desired physical changes, such as enhanced breast growth, reduction of facial and body hair growth and fat redistribution in a female pattern. Possible side effects should be discussed with patients, particularly those at risk of venous thromboembolism. The Endocrine Society guidelines for transgender men include testosterone therapy for virilization with deepening of the voice, cessation of menses plus increase of muscle mass, facial and body hair. Due to the lack of evidence, treatment for gender non-binary people should be individualized. Young people may receive pubertal suspension, consisting of gonadotrophin-releasing hormone analogs, later followed by sex steroids. Options for fertility preservation should be discussed before any hormonal intervention. Morbidity and cardiovascular risk with cross-sex hormones is unchanged among transgender men and unclear among transgender women. Sex steroid-related malignancies can occur, but are rare. Mental health problems such as depression and anxiety have been found to reduce considerably following hormonal treatment. Future studies should aim to explore the long-term outcome of hormonal treatment in transgender people and provide evidence as to effect of gender affirming treatment in the non-binary population.
  • Quality of life of treatment-seeking transgender adults: A systematic review and meta-analysis

    Nobili, Anna; Glazebrook, Cris; Arcelus, Jon (2018)
    The study aims to systematically extract and analyse data about Quality of Life (QoL) in the transgender population. A systematic literature search and meta-analysis were conducted using the MEDLINE, EMBASE, PubMed, and PsycINFO databases, up to July 2017. Only English language quantitative studies, in adults, which reported the means for validated QoL measures were included. Random-effect meta-analysis was adopted to pool data and estimate the 95% Confidence Intervals (CI). From 94 potentially relevant articles, 29 studies were included within the review and data extraction for meta-analysis was available in 14 studies. The majority of the studies were cross-sectional, lacked controls and displayed moderate risk of bias. Findings from the systematic review suggested that transgender people display poor QoL, independent of the domain investigated. Pooling across studies showed that transgender people report poorer mental health QoL compared to the general population (-0.78, 95% CI = -1.08 to -0.48, 14 studies). However, meta-analysis in a subgroup of studies looking at QoL in participants who were exclusively post-CHT found no difference in mental health QoL between groups (-0.42, 95% CI = -1.15 to 0.31; 7 studies). There was insufficient data for a pre-treatment subgroup. Evidence suggests that transgender people have lower QoL than the general population. Some evidence suggests that QoL improves post-treatment. Better quality studies that include clearly defined transgender populations, divided by stage of gender affirming treatment and with appropriate matched control groups are needed to draw firmer conclusions. Copyright © 2018, The Author(s).

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