Do You Have A Transgender Child?

| Nov 2, 2015
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Acclaimed Transgender Surgeon Outlines Pre-Surgical Considerations for Transgender Children

(Philadelphia, PA) “Transgenderism has no age limit”, said Dr. Sherman Leis, transgender surgeon of international renown, and founder of the Philadelphia Center for Transgender Surgery. Recognizing that people who are gender dysphoric are that way from birth, Dr. Leis points out that it should be no surprise that it includes young children as well as adults. As awareness of transgenderism grows in today’s world, more parents, and their children who are transgender, understand that the disharmony their children feel can be related to gender identity. As parents, many want to fix the disharmony their child is feeling as soon as possible.

“The big question is how young is too young to consider transitioning,” asks Dr. Leis. He observes that major issues to consider center around mental and physical maturity. Although Dr. Leis has consulted with parents and their transgender children as young as ten years old, he believes that sixteen probably is an approximate minimum gateway age. In fact, Dr. Leis’ youngest patient to date was sixteen years old when she surgically transitioned. “It is true that we can control and suppress puberty with modern medicine, and that it is more beneficial to experience puberty, consistent with the individual patient’s emotional and mental gender,” said Dr. Leis. “In addition, although surgical transition enhances mental and physical harmony overall, transgender surgery and the resulting physical changes are still disruptions that demand a certain level of mental maturity to transition totally and successfully,” he states.

Dr. Leis, who is a member of the international transgender medical organization, WPATH (World Professional Association of Transgender Health), agrees with their standards overall and especially for children. Said Dr. Leis, “As there are many factors that influence gender identity in children, parents should not necessarily hurry the process along. Dr. Leis recommends five qualifications to consider before proceeding with transgender surgery:

  1. Minors must have the support and written consent for transitioning by both parents and/or legal guardians.
  2. Surgical patients must be recommended for surgery by at least two experienced mental health professionals who are specialists in gender identity issues.
  3. Patients must participate in appropriate hormonal treatment for at least a year prior to transitioning.
  4. Patients should present themselves contextually in gender, full-time (24/7) for at least a year prior to surgery.
  5. Patients must undergo a thorough examination by the surgeon.

Dr. Leis is not alone as an advocate for transitioning as a minor. Some of America’s leading children’s hospitals have opened pediatric adolescent transgender clinics that refer surgery patients to Dr. Leis. When asked about how young is too young, Dr. Leis observes, “I’m more concerned about what could happen if we don’t permit transition to occur at your age. Transgender suicides are far above average, yet after surgery, they quickly drop to near “normal” rates. Therefore transgender surgery for teenagers, as with for all transgender people, is actually life-saving.”

The Philadelphia Center for Transgender Surgery is one of the leading facilities in the world, founded by Dr. Leis to be a single source of information and expertise in medical care for the transgender patient. The Philadelphia Center for Transgender Surgery offers a uniquely supportive environment where one can connect with Dr. Leis’ surgical and non-surgical team of dedicated specialists — surgeons, psychologists, endocrinologists, aestheticians, speech therapists, legal experts, and others.

The Philadelphia Center for Transgender Surgery is located in suburban Philadelphia at 19 Montgomery Avenue, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004. Phone: 610-667-1888. Visit their website for more information.

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Category: Transgender Body & Soul


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