Optimizing individual health care for children and adolescents with gender dysphoria
This project focuses on evaluating the current health care program for Danish children and adolescents with gender incongruence, which was established in January 2016. There is considerable public and political debate regarding the safety of offering hormonal treatment to young transgender individuals, as this is associated with irreversible changes. Long-term data on physical and psychosocial outcomes are to date sparse. Therefore, systemic unbiased research is much needed. In this project both retrospective and prospective follow-up studies focus on aspects regarding mental health, quality of life, physiological changes, fertility and sexuality.
Aims and Study Design
In this study, we aim to:
- Characterize the psychosocial profile of all children and young people referred for treatment, as well as the natural history of gender identity development and treatment wishes;
- Systematically evaluate biological parameters before, during and under hormonal treatment with GnRH analogues and cross-sex hormones, and to establish a biobank;
- Establish a bio-psycho-social follow-up into adulthood to evaluate treatment satisfaction, quality of life, mental health, somatic health, treatment trajectories in adulthood, possible regrets, fertility and sexuality.
The overall aim is to improve family counseling, clinical care, patient satisfaction, patient safety and ultimately quality-of-life.
The Research Team
The project is multidiciplinary and a collaboration between the Department of Growth and Reproduction and the Sexology Clinic, the Psychiatric Center Copenhagen at Rigshospitalet; the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Center at Bispebjerg Hospital and the Danish Center for Social Science Research.
Principle Investigator is Professor Katharina M Main, in collaboration with Professor Annamaria Giraldi, Consultant, PhD Mette Ewers Haahr, and Professor Anne Katrine Pagsberg. The project engages multiple PhD students from various disciplines.
The project collaborates with the following local, national and international groups:
- Niklas Rye Jørgensen, Professor, MD, Michael Schønemann Rand, MD and PhD-student, at the Department of Clinical Biochemistry
- Martin B.Jensen, MD; DMSc, Department of Endocrinology
- The Danish Center for Social Science Research (VIVE)
- Consultant and PhD Kjersti Kvernebo Sunnergren, Linköping, Sweden
- Consultant and PhD Anne Wærhe, Oslo, Norway.
The project aims to establish further collaborations with European and non-European Centers for Health Care of Transgender Youngsters.
The project is funded by Sygesikring Danmark, the Novo Nordisk foundation, and the Research foundation of the Capital region of Denmark (Region Hovedstadens forskningsfond).
Key EDMaRC researcher in the project: