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Raj Singh MD
April 20, 2024

Understanding the worst Side Effects of Transgender Hormone Therapy During MTF Transition

Side Effects of Transgender Hormone Therapy

The term “transgender” refers to when an individual’s gender identity does not align with the sex assigned to them at birth. “Transgender” embodies a personal and social identity that diverges from societal or cultural norms related to gender, leading to a pursuit of alignment through various means. Learn about the potential side effects of transgender hormone therapy during MTF transition and how to manage them for a safer and successful journey.Some focus on personal expression and social recognition, while others opt for medical intervention, such as transgender hormone therapy.

What Is Transgender Hormone Therapy?

Transgender hormone therapy is a medical treatment designed to align an individual’s physical characteristics with their gender identity. This therapy involves administering hormones not produced in adequate amounts by the individual’s body, with the type and dosage depending on their specific needs and goals.

For male-to-female (MTF) transitions, feminizing hormone therapy includes medications to reduce testosterone levels and estrogen to promote female secondary sex characteristics. The process of transgender hormone therapy begins with an evaluation by a healthcare professional who specializes in transgender care. Once deemed appropriate for hormone therapy, the healthcare professional develops a personalized treatment plan.

The Side Effects of Transgender Hormone Therapy MTF

MTF transitions through transgender hormone therapy can have various side effects, both desirable and undesirable. Awareness will help individuals anticipate and prepare for these changes.

Decreased Libido, Fewer Erections, and Less Ejaculation

The reduction in testosterone levels naturally leads to a diminished sex drive. This change can affect sexual relationships and personal satisfaction. Moreover, lower testosterone levels contribute to fewer erections and a decrease in the volume of ejaculation. Generally, the impact on libido, erections, and ejaculation can vary widely among individuals.

Testicular Atrophy

Testicular atrophy — the medical term for the shrinking of the testicles — is a permanent change and often aligns with the desired outcomes of those seeking a physical transition. Testicular atrophy usually leads to reduced sperm production, which explains the decreased ejaculation volume mentioned above.

Breast Development

Breast development is a desired and affirming change, usually beginning a few months after starting hormone therapy. The extent of breast growth varies significantly among individuals, influenced by genetics, age, and hormone dosage.

Decreased Scalp Hair Loss

The reduction in testosterone — particularly its derivative dihydrotestosterone (DHT) linked to male pattern baldness — can slow down or stop the progression of scalp hair loss. This physical change can improve a trans woman’s self-esteem.

Decreased Facial and Body Hair Growth

The reduction of testosterone levels also plays a crucial role in minimizing the density, coarseness, and rate of hair growth in areas typically associated with male patterns, such as the face, chest, and back. This change results in a more traditionally feminine appearance.

Reduced Muscle Mass

Testosterone is also vital in maintaining and building muscle bulk, so decreased levels of this hormone also mean reduced muscle mass and strength. These changes reflect the body’s adaptation to a more traditionally feminine physique.

Increased Body Fat

MTF transgender hormone therapy makes the redistribution of body fat follow a more traditionally feminine pattern, accumulating around the hips, thighs, and buttocks rather than around the abdomen. This shift contributes to a more feminine silhouette, reflecting the body’s response to the hormonal changes.

HEALOR: Gender-Reaffirming Transgender Hormone Therapy

Transgender hormone therapy is undeniably transformative and empowering, but the treatment requires careful professional healthcare oversight. The physical side effects — intertwined with mental health considerations — highlight the importance of a supportive and knowledgeable healthcare provider.

HEALOR recognizes the complexity of this journey, offering specialized transgender hormone therapy services guided by compassion and medical expertise. We commit to supporting you in achieving a body that reflects your true self, with the utmost care for your overall health.

Call us at (702) 362-2273 or contact us online, and let us talk about your transition goals.

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