Transgender Doctor in El Paso Providing Medical Support
As a new clinic in the Sun City, the Diabetes & Endocrinology Specialists of El Paso, led by Dr. Egbuonu, a transgender doctor, is proud to offer the transgender community with support in hormonal therapy.
Our clinic places a strong emphasis on assisting the transgender community in El Paso. If you’re a male who identifies female or a female who identifies male, we’re here to provide you with reliable medical care so you can live a life free to be your true self!
What Does it Mean to Be Transgender?
For many, being transgender can be extremely difficult. Some describe their experiences as “being trapped in another person’s body” or “living a lie.” Without support from family and friends, being transgender takes a heavy toll on all aspects of life. A lack of available treatment and other hindrances have prevented transgender men and women from becoming their identified gender.
The ability to transition to one’s identified gender has not always available. It wasn’t until German physician Magnus Hirschfeld introduced the term “transvestite” into the healthcare field in 1918. The term was created to define “the desire to express one’s gender in opposition to their defined sex.”
Transgender individuals experience a disconnection between their biological sex and their identified gender. A transgender man would have been assigned female at birth but identify male while a transgender female would be assigned male but identity female. In order to transition to one’s identified gender, hormonal therapy is available.
Transgender Hormone Therapy
Transgender hormone therapy, sometimes referred to as cross-sex hormone therapy is intended for individuals to gain the features of their identified gender. In sociology, there is a defined distinction between sex and gender. Sex is described as the biological traits that society uses to categorize an individual as either male or female. Gender is determined by what an individual feels and does. So while one’s sex may say “Male” on a birth certificate or driver’s license, that person may consider themselves female. This is where gender identity comes into play.
Both male and female bodies contain the hormones androgens (male hormones) and estrogens (female hormones); however, each respective gender has different amounts. Through hormonal therapy, administered by a transgender doctor, transitioning to your identified gender is possible. It’s important to note that the rate at which you see physical changes will depend on several factors, including but not limited to your genetics, age, and state of health.
Getting Started: Why a Psychological Evaluation is Necessary
Prior to the start of hormonal therapy, a psychological evaluation is required. The Standards of Care for the Health of Transsexual, Transgender, and Gender Nonconforming People (SOC) require psychological counseling for individuals who have the desire to live as their identified gender. The requirement of a psychological evaluation is based on the need to ensure there is not a rooted psychiatric disorder that may be obscuring your transgender reassignment.
Our doctor will recommend local services in counseling and support groups to make sure your journey is fostered in the most positive way possible. The period of counseling is often referred to as real-life experience (RLE). We recognize the controversy surrounding the need for an evaluation or “trial period”, which is why our clinic does their best to respect your beliefs. Our ultimate goal is to protect your safety. You are our number one priority.
Before embarking on hormone therapy, it’s important to address the potential risks, long-term considerations, and your personal health, as they all play a role in the success of your treatment. Our team is here to support your journey and provide you with the information you need to make this life-changing decision. Our transgender doctor will first meet with you to discuss your personal health and options available for hormone therapy.
Estrogen Therapy: Transitioning from Male to Female
Estrogen hormonal treatment will help develop feminine characteristics such as the formation of breasts and the reduction or elimination of body hair growth. While cross-sex hormone therapy has been clinically proven to provide a positive outcome on both psychological and physical effects for patients, most people are not prepared for the effects of treatment.
You can expect to see changes in these four major ways:
- Physical. You may begin to notice changes in the appearance of your skin, hair, and weight. The hair on your body such as your chest, back, and arms will decrease. You may start to gain weight around your hips and thighs while your bone structure will remain the same. As far as growing breasts, this varies. There is no way to determine how large or small your breasts will grow. Your sensitivity to pain and temperature might change as well.
- Emotional. Your emotional state may begin to feel like a rollercoaster but this varies person by person. Your interests, tastes, and personal relationships may be affected by your new feelings.
- Sexual. Men transitioning to women have described lower feelings of arousal or a decreased sex drive. These changes may be temporary but if you have a partner, it’s important to discuss how your sexual relationship will be impacted.
- Reproductive system. Within months of beginning hormone therapy, you will become permanently sterile. If you’re considering having a child from your sperm, you should consult with our transgender doctor about the options of preserving your sperm through a sperm bank.
Testosterone Hormone Therapy: Transitioning from Female to Male
To promote the development of male characteristics such as facial hair growth, a deeper voice, and a larger physical structure, testosterone hormone treatment is available. Therapy will provide you with both physical and emotional changes. It’s important to recognize that the process does not happen overnight and may take several months. Changes also vary from person to person.
As you begin testosterone hormone therapy, you can expect to see the following changes:
- Physical. The hair on your body will begin to increase in thickness. Growing a beard varies. Some may develop a thick beard while others will not see any facial hair growth. You may also notice oily skin and possible acne. Sweat and odor may change as well. As far as your breasts go, they will not change much but may slightly decrease in size. You will experience an increase in muscle mass and your sense of strength may increase as well. Moreover, your voice will begin to sound deeper and in the beginning feel “scratchy” or hoarse.
- Emotional. Your emotions will feel out of control in the beginning. From losing interest in pastimes you once enjoyed to feeling out of touch in personal relationships. If you have a partner, you should inform him or her of these changes as they relate to your hormonal therapy.
- Sexual. When taking testosterone, your sexual desire or needs will change. Your feelings of arousal could change and you may find differences in your sexual orientation.
- Reproductive system. Testosterone will dramatically reduce your ability to become pregnant but not completely; it is still possible to become pregnant. Your menstrual cycle will become lighter, shorter, but there is the potential for heavy periods or a complete halt.
Above all, it’s important to recognize that once you begin hormone therapy many of these changes are irreversible.
The Diabetes & Endocrinology Specialists of El Paso is Here to Help
Our clinic is here to assist transgender men and women at all points of their journey. Whether you began hormonal therapy at some point and then came to a halt or you’re in the beginning stages of seeking professional assistance. We understand the sensitivity of transitioning and the impact it can have on the rest of your life. We’re here to guide you, support you, and provide the most dependable care available in the southwest region.