Masculinising hormone therapy

2018, Responses from: Prof Neil Johnson

My daughter has endometriosis. She has recently begun identifying as transgender and is considering looking into masculinising hormone therapy. As I understand it, this therapy introduces testosterone and inhibits production of oestrogen as well as suppressing periods. What affect, if any, would such therapy have on endometriosis? Would the diminishing of oestrogen alleviate the endometriosis to any extent?

Prof Neil Johnson: Hormones with androgenic effects have long been used to treat endometriosis.  One of the oldest medical treatments for endometriosis, danazol, was very effective, but its use has been severely curtailed by significant androgenising side effects.  Endometriosis is vanishingly rare among men – and one of the reasons for this is believed to be the high levels of androgens typical for males.  The short answer is that – for the reasons that you highlight – your daughter would likely experience a substantial beneficial affect in relation to resolution of symptoms related to endometriosis if she was to use masculinising hormone therapy to commence the transition to the male gender.

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