Being transgender in America is not always easy. You are often met with confusion, a lack of acceptance, and even open discrimination. However, you do not let this negativity keep you from getting dressed and walking out your front door every day. Nor should you allow it to prevent you from seeking out necessary, high quality medical care. As a transgender individual, whether you are female-to-male or male-to-female, regular trips to the OB/GYN (obstetrician-gynecologist) are a medical necessity. If you avoid these visits out of fear, you could be doing your body a great deal of harm without realizing it. Here is what you need to know about trips to the OB/GYN as a transgender patient.
The Medical Community Supports Transgender Medical Care
While medical organizations do not speak on behalf of every individual doctor in the United States, they do represent the overall trends and thoughts of the medical community. So, when the Medical College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists releases statements in support of acceptance and treatment of transgender patients, you can bet that the support is really there.
Now, this does not mean that every doctor will provide you with treatment. Before you go in to the OB/GYN office, give them a call to make sure they are comfortable treating you. And know that their hesitation is not necessarily a discriminatory one. Many doctors do not feel that they are qualified to treat transgender patients if they have never treated a transgender patient or have not received any training in these areas.
The medical realities of transgender individuals are quite unique. Gender reassignment surgeries, hormone treatments, and cosmetic surgery procedures will all affect the type of reproductive care you need. If a doctor tells you they do not feel qualified to take you on as a patient, do not feel offended. Take it instead as a sign of respect that the doctor wants you to get the best medical care possible.
Even If You Have Transitioned Completely, You Still Need Routine Care
If you have completed your female-to-male transition and have undergone the necessary gender reassignment surgeries, you will still need to see an OB/GYN regularly. Because your body was born genetically female, you will need annual breast cancer screenings and later in life mammograms as your body will still be at higher risk of developing cancer than those born genetically male.
Additionally, if you did not have a full hysterectomy or oophorectomy (the removal of the ovaries), you will need continued annual checkups with an OB/GYN to ensure that you do not have cancer or other issues with your remaining female reproductive organs.
If you have completed your male-to-female transition, one of the bonuses of being a woman is the need for regular visits to the OB/GYN. You will need regular screenings for cancer in your neovagina, and an OB/GYN will also be able to provide you with STD-screenings.
Finally whether you are just beginning your transition or you have completed it, you will be in need of hormone replacements your entire life. And rather than going about illegal means to procure your hormones on the street, take the safe route and visit the OB/GYN. They will test your hormone levels and be able to prescribe you the proper dosage to maintain your transitioning or transitioned body.
While you may be fearful of persecution or discrimination due to your transgender status, you cannot let this fear deter you from attaining proper medical care. Make sure you go to the OB/GYN annually to ensure that you remain healthy and cancer-free for the rest of your life. Do not allow your health to suffer. For more help, contact a company such as Women's Clinic of Johnson County.Share