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The Guardian is ignoring the risks of testosterone on trans people

When will health reporters tell the truth about testosterone and gender transition? Credit: Getty

July 9, 2024 - 10:00am

A new article in the Guardian cautions that testosterone prescriptions for women experiencing the menopause are spiralling “out of control”, with “long-term implications” for female health. Experts even go so far as to warn about the influence of “testosterone evangelists” on social media who exalt the drug’s life-changing benefits.

Dr Paula Briggs, a sexual and reproductive health consultant and chair of the British Menopause Society, told reporters that “people are being led to believe that they must have this. But we have no idea what long-term testosterone supplementation does to women.” Dr Briggs drew parallels to the potentially fatal risks of steroid use among male bodybuilders, pointing to unknown risks to the arteries and hearts of women who may end up with “supra-physiological” levels of the hormone in their bodies.

The article enlists the expertise of medical specialists with a range of opinions on the treatment at hand, and ultimately emphasises the need for caution in the face of known and unknown risks. In other words, it represents typical health reporting. But the subject — testosterone use among females — draws attention to the reckless exceptionalism that defines gender medicine and which has deformed reporting on this issue. The balance of perspectives and caution applied here, regarding the use of small doses of testosterone in middle-aged women over a short period of time, is absent from most reporting on gender medicine, which involves the use of high (one might even say “supra-physiological”) doses of testosterone in adolescent and young adult females over long periods of time.

Testosterone is a controlled substance for a reason: the drug’s risks are substantial. The Mayo Clinic warns middle-aged men considering testosterone replacement therapy to weigh the risks carefully, and discourages unrealistic expectations among those seeking such treatments. “Although some men believe they feel younger and more vigorous if they take testosterone medications,” a report reads, “there’s little evidence to support the use of testosterone in otherwise healthy men.” On the subject of testosterone supplementation during menopause, the clinic notes that “[m]ore studies are needed to understand the risks associated with use of testosterone over the long term in women.” Harvard Medical School encourages patients to “consider alternatives before boosting your hormones indefinitely”.

The risks of “masculinising hormone therapy” (testosterone prescribed to females for identity reasons), on the other hand, are presented only after a declaration that testosterone “can be safe and effective when delivered by a health care provider with expertise in transgender care”. The Mayo Clinic also suggests that, in order to “minimize risk”, medical providers will monitor patients in an attempt to keep “hormone levels in the range that’s typical for cisgender men” — never mind that female bodies aren’t male bodies. Testosterone levels in adult females typically range from 15 to 70 nanograms per deciliter, while typical male levels range from 300 to 1,000 nanograms per deciliter. On what basis, exactly, does dosing a female patient with 20 times her body’s natural testosterone levels represent cautious risk management?

Reporting on the subject has been — for the most part — abysmal, more concerned about relaying support for patient identities than deploying the same scrutiny reporters would apply to any other health issue. A recent Guardian headline, for example, proclaimed “fast access” to gender-affirming hormones to be “lifesaving”. The rest of the article focused narrowly on a study of the self-reported mental-health benefits of 64 adults followed for a period of just three months, and admitted no consideration of risks to physical health whatsoever. Why was there no scrutiny here?

The goal of gender medicine’s critics can perhaps best be summarised as an end to the exceptionalism that has shaped both medical practice and reporting. Doctors should hang on to their medical training and not forget everything they know about male and female bodies when patients’ gender markers change. Health reporters should ask questions, balance perspectives, and report their findings in the clearest language available. We’ll know we’ve turned a corner on gender medicine when the magical thinking — and prescribing, and reporting — stops.


Eliza Mondegreen is a graduate student in psychiatry and the author of Writing Behavior on Substack.

elizamondegreen

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Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden
16 days ago

Only societies veering towards a generalised transhuman ethos and defined by a significantly enhanced level of social permissiveness would allow a mainstream tolerance to grow for testosterone self-medication, or for clinics legitimately prescribing the treatment for patients young and old with issues over their sexual orientation.
Previously, such self-experimentation was the preserve of an underground bodybuilding cult and a tiny number of transsexuals preparing for surgical intervention to change sex. The key is that alarming levels of social permissiveness have fused this pharmo-cultural underground into the liberal politics of today, which is why we sense a transhuman future is just around the corner as predicted by the old cyberpunk novelists.

Skin Shallow
Skin Shallow
16 days ago
Reply to  Tyler Durden

If it was truly playing with transhumanism, I’d be seriously fine with it.

But it seems like a fashionable solution to serious mental distress in many cases of (often very young) women going for the trans option and it’s all just very sad.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Tyler Durden

No one can “change sex”. At best, you can assume the appearance of the other sex. But the attempts are usually ludicrously comical. The women who try to become men look like mini-lumberjacks – bearded wonders who are 5’3″. The men who pretend to be women are often quite tall, with very small badly placed breasts. Soooooo funny-looking.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

Imbecile, the change of sex occurs just exactly as described, and the few who you think are funny looking would be none if child abusers such as yourself would not prohibit properly timed gender affirming care for them.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

When I see you, my man, I will laugh loudly and derisively. You trannies do not pass, and you are funny looking. What’s even more amusing is that you think that you can resemble a woman. You cannot. It’s just so funny.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

There are many transgender people who can not “pass” — there are many who do, and you take no notice of them.

Given your unhinged obvious bigotry against transgender people, the best explanation for your desire to abuse transgender children by forcing the puberty of their sex on them, is your desire to identify for your abuse as many transgender people as you can.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

I have no bigotry. I do have a laugh reflex. When I see you, I will laugh because doubtless you fail to pass. And putting on extra eye shadow and mascara does not disguise the fact that your $25,000 b**b job is a big fat fail – have you ever noticed that men with added boobs have the boobs in the wrong place? they are too widely separated. There’s no cleavage, because the boobs are about 3 ft apart. It’s just really funny looking.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
15 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

“I have no bigotry.”
That is the most laughably stupid lie you have told here.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
15 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Puberty is one of the most important phases in life. Bodies grow and become sexually mature. Bone density development happens in puberty. Cognitive development, as in the ability to understand abstract concepts and executive decisions. Studies have shown that children who have taken puberty blockers lose eight to 10 IQ points. Five foot tall men and women will always look like children. Think about that.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
15 days ago
Reply to  UnHerd Reader

Think about this, the sole and usually thought of as a net positive unintended effect of puberty blockers is 0 to 2 extra inches of height, when taken for purposes of gender dysphoria remediation.

“Studies have shown that children who have taken puberty blockers lose eight to 10 IQ points.” <– No, no such effect has ever been measured in adults who for any reason took blockers as children. You will cite nothing to the contrary.

“Five foot tall men and women will always look like children.” <– So what, that doesn’t happen.

“Think about that.” <– Think about this, you know nothing real about it.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

And the notion of “properly timed” means “puberty blockers”. Persons who do this are perpetual children, and never develop adult intelligence. The maturation process that occurs in puberty is essential for normal adult cognition. Trannies do foolish things because they have never developed normal intelligence, and this is a self-mutilation. It’s really funny how the delusion is self-harming.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

“And the notion of “properly timed” means “puberty blockers”. Persons who do this are perpetual children, and never develop adult intelligence.” <– A lie.

“Trannies do foolish things because they have never developed normal intelligence, and this is a self-mutilation.” <– Further lies.

You really are the gibbering imbecile here.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
15 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Have you grown a vagina, a uterus, a cervix, ovaries? Have you been traumatized as a young girl when boys and men take a sexual interest in you? Smooth skin and breast implants do not make you a woman. It’s all pretend.

David Morley
David Morley
15 days ago
Reply to  UnHerd Reader

Have you been traumatized as a young girl when boys and men take a sexual interest in you?

What an odd thing to say. Would you be more accepting if Talia was able to tell you that yes, she had been traumatised in some way. It’s as if you think being a woman has to be earned through trauma.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
15 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

I was attacked when I was 12-years-old by a grown man. He was attempting to rape me when I was rescued by our landlord. When I was developing curves and breasts, men took notice and said disgusting things to me, and my friends dealt with it ,too.

El Uro
El Uro
15 days ago
Reply to  UnHerd Reader

Does it broke your whole life? Does it means that each and every woman has this experience?
Sorry, sometimes women’s way of reasoning causes genuine bewilderment.

Dr E C
Dr E C
15 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

We get it, David: you hate women. You don’t even have sympathy for female rape victims. But no one cares what you think _being_ a woman entails.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
15 days ago
Reply to  UnHerd Reader

And if he still has the ol’ Johnson, he’s probably a sex worker, and he needs to be careful. The reason trannie sex workers get kilt is because when you do the big unwrap, the Johns don’t want gay sex with a trannie. They want real sex with a woman. So they beat the crap out of the trannie. I hope Talia is keeping safe.

N Forster
N Forster
15 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Imbecile.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
15 days ago
Reply to  N Forster

No I bother to know what is real before I opine.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Tyler Durden

You know nothing real or relevant about it. Transhumanism has nothing at all to do with it.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
15 days ago
Reply to  Tyler Durden

How is transhumanism relevant? While there are subcultures around bio-hacking, aging reversal and an appetite amongst some for technologies like Neuralink for non-disabled people, there is very little overlap because those communities and gender ideologues, either socially or in terms of visions of the future.
Genuine ‘transhumanists’ are tech-bro-types. Many of them will be into crypto and have flattering opinions of Elon Musk. You aren’t likely to find many fans of Judith Butler or ‘Xe/xir’ pronoun users amongst them.

Paul T
Paul T
16 days ago

After a few short years of sanity pushing back I feel, with sadness, that we are about to see recent gains for a reality-based reality unwound at the cost of women and children’s physical, mental and proximal safety.

2 plus 2 equals 4
2 plus 2 equals 4
16 days ago

Why is The Guardian ignoring the risks of testosterone on trans people?

The answer to this is obvious:
Because The Guardian is in thrall to those who believe – or pretend to believe – that trans-identifying people are a kind of holy class and that unthinking affirmation of this status supersedes everything else.
Its more important to the them/theys who are in charge at The Guardian that trans identities remain unchallenged than that doctors abide by practices and precautions which have been established over centuries to try to protect people from medical malpractice.

Jim Veenbaas
Jim Veenbaas
16 days ago

The irony is delicious. But then again, the regime media long ago abandoned truth as a measuring stick for reporting.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
16 days ago

I have always thought guardian readers are pretty stupid. I read it ( i sadly admit daily) just to figure out what stupidity is being pushed on stupid people on any given day. I actually think many guardian readers ( if sadly not a majoriry )are, like me, reading it condescendingly

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago

Imbecile, you have no excuse to claim any risk is ignored. Now if you will claim the NHS, a socialist medical system, is generically incompetent I can take that at face value . . .

. . . But to wail about supra-physiological levels as if a $40 ~ $69 over the counter test can’t find what level there is in a person, making adjusting the dosage easy, is stupid of you.

The fact is that with menopause (and potentially prior to it) a woman’s testosterone level can fall below the usual 0.5 to 2.4 nmol/L, and testosterone in women is required for properly functioning memory and sex drive.

“Reporting on the subject has been — for the most part — abysmal”

And you, Mondegreen, are among the worst. You know nothing and are happy with that — if you can spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt about what you hate only for your base emotional reasons.

“The risks of “masculinising hormone therapy” (testosterone prescribed to females for identity reasons), on the other hand, are presented only after a declaration that testosterone “can be safe and effective when delivered by a health care provider with expertise in transgender care”. The Mayo Clinic also suggests that, in order to “minimize risk”, medical providers will monitor patients in an attempt to keep “hormone levels in the range that’s typical for cisgender men” — never mind that female bodies aren’t male bodies. Testosterone levels in adult females typically range from 15 to 70 nanograms per deciliter, while typical male levels range from 300 to 1,000 nanograms per deciliter. On what basis, exactly, does dosing a female patient with 20 times her body’s natural testosterone levels represent cautious risk management?”

Because they are not women, and their body responds to male typical levels of testosterone as pleases them very well, and with no more risk than a man has for the same. Men and women are not differing species, the underlying biochemistry is the same.

You have no basis on which to say otherwise. Even if you did, you did not bother to mention it.

“We’ll know we’ve turned a corner on gender medicine when the magical thinking — and prescribing, and reporting — stops.”

You are the one with magical thinking. You think gender does not exist all — or — is magically always identical to the sex of a person. You have no excuse for it and never even any answer.

For the sake of your delusions you are a child abusing imbecile.

You really very literally would rather that transgender people kill themselves out the despair you inflict on them for the sake of your moral vanity, than that they happily innocently exist.

https://x.com/JolyonMaugham/status/1803729360731406489

Thereby refuting you.

Adam P
Adam P
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

My goodness what a dangerous person you are. The premise of this article ‘The Guardian are hypocrites’ is a fair one. The evidence base for the risks cited by the consultant in the article is the same evidence base for the risks of the use of testosterone in young people. Whether the risks are of the same magnitude or outweigh the benefits will depend on the population. A clear headed anlysis of the medical literature would certainly aim to find out if the differences between menopausal women and female children are prognostic enough to change the risk / benefirt profile associated with the intervention in the two populations.
However, the point remains, Testosterone is considered a powerful medicine that has different risks according to those who are given it. For men, since Testosterone is a proliferation mechanism for Prostate cancer, then it can increase this risk. For women, excess testosterone is converted into estrogen, which is a proliferation mechanism for breast cancer. These are probably the most concerning side effects but there are multiple other (polycythemia, heart attack, stroke etc).
The best way for me to respond to your post is just to quote it though
”Because they are not women, and their body responds to male typical levels of testosterone as pleases them very well, and with no more risk than a man has for the same.
You have no basis on which to say otherwise.”
Is just absolute gibberish and where some sense can be gained from what you said, its unjustified and is not supported by theory or evidence. The reason i say you are dangerous is because despite your incoherence and lack of clarity, you call the journalist a ‘child abusing imbecile. Horrific behaviour.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Adam P

No, there are several premises of the article, everyone of them is wrong — and some of them are deliberate lies.

Modern HRT supplementing human identical molecules delivered transcutaneously to cisgender typical levels has no side effects or risks untypical to that gender of which the levels are typical. Intentional effects are not side effects at all.

“Supra-physiological” has nothing to do with it, no such levels are involved.

Anabolic steroids as with body building is also not involved in any way.

Fast access means no more than a year after puberty blockers are undertaken for youth with no confounding symptomology.

In fact because the testosterone is not “excess” and they generally use antigonadotropics, transgender men do not see rises in estrogen.

“Is just absolute gibberish” <– No, it is not. Every word of it is literally true.

You are the sort of bigoted idiot who thinks gender either does not exist or, it is magically always identical to the sex of a person.

You are worse than wrong.

Mondegreen is a child abusing imbecile. So apparently are you. You think it is a fine thing to force boys to have breasts and periods and to force girls to have beards and deep voices.

That is really the only thing this is about.

That and how your mindless hate for and fear of some people drives you to seek their abuse in law and policy.

Andrew H
Andrew H
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

There’s no such thing as cisgender you imbecile. “You think it is a fine thing to force boys to have breasts and periods and to force girls to have beards and deep voices.”
Boys are not girls. Girls are not boys.
No woman has a p***s. No man has a vagina. Puberty blockers are profound child abuse. Trans ideology is toxic, homophobic and destructive.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
15 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

Of course there are cisgender and transgender people, because gender physically exists and is not produced by the same tissues which comprise the sex of a person. Those are measured physical facts, not any ideology. Some people who are cisgender are gay or bisexual — so are some people who are transgender.

Your faith in the mindless factless “gender critical” ideology is toxic and destructive, and it has exactly the same basis as does actual homophobia.

Red Reynard
Red Reynard
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Talia, I’m a little confused; trans people tell us that physical sex ( this birth-sexed body they are born into) is NOT the same as their Gender. This being the case, surely Testosterone impacts upon the physical sexed body, and not the Gender of a patient. So, your insistence that no harm can be rendered because “they are Women” is erronious, isn’t it?

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Red Reynard

It is perfectly correct that sex and gender are produced by or comprised of entirely separate tissues. Try reading again more carefully what I wrote.

“Because they are not women, and their body responds to male typical levels of testosterone as pleases them very well, and with no more risk than a man has for the same.”

Do you think a body with a female sex has no testosterone receptors? Or a body with a male sex has no estrogen receptors?

At that quite a few transgender people including myself feel a substantial ease of all anxiety and like symptomology precisely because those receptors in neural cells are finally getting the biochemistry they need and are wired up for. When I once got a vial of estrogen that had been mishandled and allowed to become damaged by heat in shipping, I knew way before the blood test it wasn’t working at all.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Gender is a fiction. Sex alone is a real thing, and it is binary.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

And that lie is your gender ideology, the only one involved here.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

I thought as much – you are a psychotic delusional trannie male person. You cannot justify the perversion of your own body, but that is your entire purpose.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

In fact the only delusional person here of the two of us is you. You will present no factual excuse for your claimed opinions whatsoever.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
15 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

So, Talia my man, do you do the only job available to trannies – sex work? I hope you are being safe. A lot of trannie sex workers are killed by disappointed Johns. So, stay safe my man.

Skin Shallow
Skin Shallow
16 days ago

I suspect (tho this is never explicitly said) that many medical professionals see hormones for people with gender dysphoria as something akin to antipsychotics: pretty awful frequent side effects and a possibility of disastrous ones but still worth it because (that’s an unsayable thing) many of those people, ESPECIALLY young women flocking to gender services nowadays, are fairly seriously mentally ill, with either treatment resistant specific disorders or a bundle of various and serious comorbidities. So it’s pretty hopeless anyway and if transition offers a chance of improving at a risk of physical damage, they might be willing to take it.

David Morley
David Morley
16 days ago
Reply to  Skin Shallow

Yes – I suspect it’s seen (rightly or wrongly) as the lesser of two evils.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

You are both desperately ignorant of the matter.

There are no frequent or awful side effects to current best practice HRT.

“many of those people, ESPECIALLY young women flocking to gender services nowadays, are fairly seriously mentally ill, with either treatment resistant specific disorders or a bundle of various and serious comorbidities” <– You know nothing real about it. As Hillary Cass has chosen to prostitute herself to so instruct you.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

You appear to either be a psychotic delusional trannie or a quack making money from mutilating children.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

No, but you are child abusing imbecile. You think it’s ok to force a boy to have breasts and a period and to force a girl to have a beard and a deep voice.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

You are a deluded psychopath, like all trannies. You trannies are so funny looking. You never pass. Everyone knows what you are and is laughing at you.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

“You are a deluded psychopath, like all trannies” <– Literally not the case in any way whatsoever.

“You trannies are so funny looking. You never pass. Everyone knows what you are and is laughing at you.” <– I could believe you are 13 going on three.

Andrew H
Andrew H
15 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

You live down to the entirely valid stereotype of an utterly deranged trans rights activist.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
15 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

So what? People of your opinion say that of any transgender person or ally who will comply meekly with your program of abuse.

Because you ignore measured physical reality, you are the deranged one, and that leaves alone the love of monstrous child abuse inherent to the gender critical ideology.

Andrew H
Andrew H
14 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Classic TRA DARVO
Deny, attack, and reverse victim and offender. Interesting that the trans bullies are now appropriating the accusation of “monstrous child abuse”.
I know this will be familiar to many if not most readers of Unherd, but in this case I think it’s worthwhile, once again, spelling out what’s really happening: truly toxic trans activists are actively pushing their sickening ideology on children. Not just drag queen story hour, but wholesale capture of education and indoctrination of children into believing in any number of invented gender identities. Not letting them simply be children but instead planting the seed that in order to be interesting they need to question their identity, as well as sexualising their education at an inappropriately young age. Then enccouraging these understandably confused kids online to embrace a fictitious gender identity and embark on a medical pathway involving puberty blockers and potentially also surgery. It’s a scandal. It’s a disgrace.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
14 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

You are the offender. You want to force boys to have breasts and periods. You want to force girls to have beards and deep voices. You are the grotesque child abuser.

You have not even one fact which supports you, you lie continually. All the facts of the matter support my opinions and not yours.

Andrew H
Andrew H
14 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Typically, Talia is actively obfuscating here. Just to clear things up for everyone: when “Talia” says “boys”, he (for Talia is almost certainly a “he”, however he identifies in his imaginary world), he means natal girls who have been brainwashed by all-pervasive gender ideology into believing that they are boys. By “girls”, he means natal boys with the opposite misapprehension.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
14 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

I (she) obfuscate nothing. I am and have always been clear. By boy I mean someone with a typically male gender. By girl I mean someone with typically female gender.

The only gender ideology involved is yours, the “gender critical” fiction by which you deny gender even exists, or that if it does, it is magically always the same as the sex of a person.

Andrew H
Andrew H
14 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

And it’s also worth reflecting, once again, on what possible motivation these odious activists might have for wanting to encourage as many children as possible to remain in a pre-pubescent state for as long as possible – so 16 and 17 year olds with pre-pubescent bodies. Any red flags yet?

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
14 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

LIAR, you haven’t said even one thing true about it. The DARVO here is all yours.

“for wanting to encourage as many children as possible to remain in a pre-pubescent state for as long as possible” <– Puberty blocker use is indicated for ideally no more than 1 year, liar.

You are the child abuser, you want to force girls to have beards and deep voices and to force boys to have breasts and periods.

You have not even one fact excusing you.

Andrew H
Andrew H
14 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

I’ve deleted this comment as my earlier comment on DARVO has reappeared above.

Lindsay S
Lindsay S
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

There absolutely are awful side effects to current best practice HRT! And frequent horrible side effects to the pill! Messing with hormones can really mess you up! Your delusions on the matter don’t change reality!

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Lindsay S

“There absolutely are awful side effects to current best practice HRT!” <– Which you will be unable to find any evidence of. You will report side effects of older HRT regimens.

“And frequent horrible side effects to the pill!” <– Which are not what we are talking about.

“Your delusions on the matter don’t change reality!” <– No delusions are involved here but yours.

Andrew Morgan
Andrew Morgan
15 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
15 days ago
Reply to  Andrew Morgan

Progestins are pharmaceutical term for other than human identical substances which have a progesterone like effect, but which are not in fact human identical progesterone.

Jonathan Andrews
Jonathan Andrews
16 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

It’s the lesser of two evils only because the medical profession believes it can save us from pain.
It often cannot and needs to have the humility to say, even in the face of suffering, that they cannot help.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago

Of course the Unherd here has already protected its herd from inconvenient facts. It is a fact Mondegreen does not manage to mention any actual risks. She names none. Not a single numeric increase in risk is called to anyone’s attention here.

Yellow journalism at its finest.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Only idiots take drugs without understanding the consequences. You sound as if you are already an experimental monkey for the T peddlers. Get ready for some effects. Problem is, you won’t know what they are until they happen. If the usual approach to drugs is not used, you’re in the same place that Josef Mengele was in – having fun with chemicals. Just that the person herself is the experimenter.

David Morley
David Morley
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

Downvote from me for using the argument from Mengele.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

Pray tell, what is the difference in the experimentation by the gender clinicians and that of Mengele? None that I can think of.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
14 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

You do not think at all, you only emote excuseless hatred.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

You have no excuse, and neither does Mondegreen to think the consequences are not perfectly well understood.

Did you not note Mondegreen presents no evidence what she claims is true?

Did you not note she lies to imply it has anything to do with the supra-physiological non-human molecularly anabolic steroids used by bodybuilders?

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

The risks are not known in the slightest. There have been no studies, and none could actually be performed ethically. Giving someone wrong-sex hormones cannot be justified. Unless you are a psychotic delusional trannie, which you probably are.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

You are ignorant or more likely lying. In fact the supplementation for cisgender women of testosterone to level usual is quite perfectly well understood. Yes, people taking HRT are tracked for once common symptoms associated with HRT, and modern HRT has no such symptoms seen.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Some risks associated with cross-sex hormones: high blood pressure, stroke, heart disease including heart attacks, deep vein thrombosis, liver disease including elevated enzymes and cancer, aggressive prostate and breast cancer (in Trans women), polycythaemia (abnormal levels of red blood cells), vaginal atrophy and early menopause with the usual impacts on health (in trans men), gall stones, dyslipidaemia (abnormal levels of fat in the blood). Fill your boots.

David Morley
David Morley
16 days ago
Reply to  UnHerd Reader

OK, but why? What is the protective mechanism in biological men that enables them to deal with high levels of testosterone which are dangerous for women.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  UnHerd Reader

There are no risks to the use of cross-sex hormones which are greater than those risks seen in members of the target sex, when modern HRT is used — modern HRT uses human exact hormones molecularly and to cisgender typical levels and administered transcutaneously.

I note also you lie to claim some perfectly well known and desired effects are risks.

David Morley
David Morley
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Can you answer the question, which is obvious to all, of why testosterone is potentially harmful to menopausal women, but apparently not to younger women and girls (using it as a means to transition)

On the face of it this seems odd – but you may have an answer.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

Testosterone to cisgender typical levels has no risks not associated with the levels of risk risks associated with that gender when cisgender, including to menopausal women.

Claims to the contrary are based either in falsehood entirely — or — risks associated with prior practice for HRT which included hormones which were not human in origin and had different but similar molecules and sometimes very different metabolic byproducts –or — as with DES an entirely different molecule which nonetheless fit and activated the same receptor — and — pills taken by mouth where huge doses were given to have enough of the intended molecule get past the digestive system and liver, but which greatly exacerbated the presence of metabolic byproducts. Think Premarin, created from pregnant mare urine. Nobody should be using that these days.

You are making the mistake of taking Mondegreen at face value, and she lies. Her purpose here is to tell a lie she thinks is pious — but there is no such thing.

Andrew H
Andrew H
13 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

There is no such thing as cisgender. There are just men and women.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
13 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

Of course there are cisgender and transgender people — who are themselves men and women — because gender physically exists and is not produced by the same tissues which comprise the sex of a person. Those are measured physical facts, not any ideology.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

I have answered it more than once — the UnHerd’s censorship will not apparently let you see my reply to you on the topic yet.

David Morley
David Morley
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Can see it now. Thanks for such a full reply.

Andrew H
Andrew H
13 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

If only Unherd censored your deluded, aggressive ramblings rather than the perfectly reasonable pushbacks of those who agreee with the entirely reasonable premise of this article.
Everything you have written in response to this article is a classic example of DARVO – deny, attack, and reverse victim and offender. Let’s not forget that child abuse is a core tenet of trans rights activism, from drag queen story hour to the institutional capture of the education system and the resulting mass indoctrination and early sexualisation of children. Trans rights activism is indeed a monstrous ideology.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
13 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

If you could find any facts to show you are not the deluded one, you’d be doing better.

You are owed no respect, you are a child abusing liar.

“Everything you have… a monstrous ideology.” <– DARVO is not a magic word that wins your argument. I have mentioned the facts that prove what I claim. You have none.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
13 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

The premise of this article is nonfactual, it is purposefully deceitful.

Cross sex HRT has nothing to do with anabolic steroid abuse by bodybuilders.

The level involved are not above what is typical for the target sex.

There are no side effects or risks above what is typical for the target sex.

Nothing of that typical to the target sex risk is concealed in any way.

Mondegreen simply lies over and over. Truth telling is not her purpose. Neither is it yours. You are here to lie.

“Let’s not forget that child abuse is a core tenet of trans rights activism” <– A lie by you, and not anything you have even attempted to show any proof of — it is your bigoted , baseless faith and ideology only.

” from drag queen story hour” <– Which is nothing more than a thoroughly dressed person in heavy makeup reading a story.

“to the institutional capture of the education system” <– Heaven forbid biological facts you don’t like and can not emotionally handle are taught in school.

” the resulting mass indoctrination ” <– Says the liar who wants children to be liars like they are.

“early sexualisation of children” <– Which exists only in your demented obsessions.

“Trans rights activism is indeed a monstrous ideology” <– Which is your ideology only, the only ideology involved.

Because you want to force girls to have beards and deep voices, and you want to force boys to have breasts and periods, you are the monster.

Andrew H
Andrew H
11 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

You’re a monstrous freak

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
11 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

You are a child abusing liar who can prove nothing of what you claim.

Andrew H
Andrew H
11 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

You need your hard drive checked you freak

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
11 days ago
Reply to  Andrew H

You want to control children’s genitalia and sex lives — your hard drive needs to be checked.

David Morley
David Morley
16 days ago

Yes, I’ve been struck by this inconsistency before.

Can anybody shed any light? Are male bodies made in some way which protects them from the damage otherwise done by testosterone? Is it only young men? Are older women more prone to damage than younger women? are older men, for example if supplants only bring levels up to that of a younger man?

2 plus 2 equals 4
2 plus 2 equals 4
16 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

Are male bodies made in some way which protects them from the damage otherwise done by testosterone?

There’s a normal, safe testosterone range for males which is much higher than for females. This is either a function of evolution or God’s design, depending on which side of that particular argument you take. We do experience consequences as a result of our higher normal levels of the hormone, but these are typically minor ones: e.g. acne and male-pattern baldness.
If you go excessively above normal levels, which is most often because you’re taking it synthetically but can be caused naturally by things like some tumours, then it can lead to more significant medical consequences, like enlarged prostate and infertility.

David Morley
David Morley
16 days ago

Thank you for this. Do you know what the mechanism is that gives men this protection?

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

There is no such mechanism. They and you and Mondegreen are only presuming what levels are typical for a human male are “risky” for someone born with a female sex whose gender is male.

Did you not note Mondegreen presents no evidence that is true?

Did you not note she lies to imply it has anything to do with the supra-physiological non-human molecularly anabolic steroids used by bodybuilders?

David Morley
David Morley
16 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

You do me a disservice. It was surely obvious I was being Socratic, and probing at an area of the argument I thought to be weak or baseless.

Andrew McDonald
Andrew McDonald
15 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

That’s an interesting phrase – ‘…born with a female sex whose gender is male.’ I’m not quite sure how you could be born ‘with’ a sex, rather than ‘as’ a sex. Surely it’s a chromosomal issue – either you is or you ain’t? And if not, how not? Scientific rather than political answers please.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
15 days ago

People generally are born with a nose, not as a nose. This is true even though the genes for the nose are in every cell of the body.

2 plus 2 equals 4
2 plus 2 equals 4
16 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

I’m stretching my high school level memory of this subject to be honest, but the basics are that your liver makes a protein which locks any testosterone not processed where its needed (muscle growth etc) and metabolises it through the bloodstream and out.

There’s no special trick men’s bodies do which women’s can’t. We’ve just evolved to do this efficiently at much higher levels.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
16 days ago

“We’ve just evolved to do this efficiently at much higher levels.” <– No, men and women have evolved the same in that regard, and, you have SHBG biochemistry wrong at that.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
15 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

One specific issue often faced by females on high testosterone doses is vaginal atrophy, which can be extremally painful and lead to urinary issues, as well as infertility.
There are also a lot of reports that transmen suffer from higher risk factors for cardiovascular disease. (I don’t know if links work, but if you google ‘Cardiovascular Risk Associated with Gender Affirming Hormone Therapy in Transgender Population’, an open-access paper with a section on the topic comes up. Although, a lot of the framing in the paper suggests the authors would prefer not to find any evidence of harm, if you’ll forgive me being cynical).
It’s difficult to translate this into actual risk of cardiovascular disease, because you need large sample sizes and long follow up times, and that research doesn’t exist as far as I can tell. But males experience more cardiovascular disease and can have different symptomology, so it’s not that surprising.
More generally, males experience elevated levels of testosterone from the womb onward. Their bodies are shaped, since before birth, by very different proportions of sex hormones, which drive sex-specific puberty. It is reasonable to expect that introducing male hormone levels to post-pubertal women would have novel effects.

David Morley
David Morley
15 days ago
Reply to  UnHerd Reader

Thank you for such a reasonable and thoughtful response. Why can’t we have more comments like this on Unherd?

The more I read, the more I feel there is a need for further research. Both I to health implications, and into understanding the nature of trans itself.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
15 days ago
Reply to  David Morley

It is not reasonable or thoughtful. If you are trying to be “Socratic” please recall Poe’s law.

A transgender man has no desire for a vagina, generally speaking, and from wide reading on the topic and personal conversation I question the frequency and seriousness of any problem with either peeing or not doing it.

In the event such problems are actual problems, then low dose topical crams will alleviate them without unwanted system feminization.

The general claim HRT causes cardiovascular problems* is suspect as it does not differentiate older HRT from current HRT.

And the only substantive claim which could be made is if testosterone HRT in transgender men raised their level of cardiovascular disease above that for cisgender men — because for it to go to the level seen in cisgender is expected and not a side effect.

Try to remember the lie told here by Mondegreen, that the risks are simultaneously unknown and concealed — neither is true.

Try also to remember the gibbering insanity of Paul Thompson, however well concealed, is at the root of all “gender critical” bigotry. It has no good motive.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
16 days ago

The Guardian, like many other media outlets, has long since crossed from journalism to a combination of activism and dogma. The paper is a subject of ideological capture that near-religious. It and the others cannot challenge any aspect of the dogma lest they be branded as heretics. It would be comical if not tragic – much of the readership laughs at people of faith for their belief in an “imaginary” being while seeing no problem with pumping women full of male hormones or vice-versa on the pretense that a man is a woman or a woman is a man simply by claiming to be.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
16 days ago
Reply to  Alex Lekas

The Guardian, like many other media outlets, has long since crossed from journalism to a combination of activism and dogma.
‘Long since’ being around 100 years ago when the Guardian espoused eugenics and sterilisation as the cure for all the world’s problems just as it now espouses dodgy chemistry.

Jonathan Andrews
Jonathan Andrews
16 days ago

While I believe most medical practitioners do their honest best to help people, the complexity of the human body is beyond much treatment. It is not, however, in the interests of the medical establishment to accept this.
Two circumstances here. Firstly, though I only understand this second hand, the menopause can be very difficult for a woman and, maybe, various hormones might help, they come with costs as illustrated. It does not suit medics to say that perhaps the best thing is to eat well, rest and get your partner to make you a hot water bottle at times and the odd the odd nice cup of tea.
Secondly, those suffering from a distress at being male or female when they would rather be female or male, are unlikely to be helped by medical assistance (perhaps very occasionally). They are more likely to be damaged. The best they can hope for is an ability to pass off themselves through the way the dress and behave as the opposite sex. It probably not great but at least they don’t have such traumatic surgeries and lifetimes of drug treatments.
It can’t being much fun suffering gender dysphoria, just as it is little fun enduring menopause but maybe there is little that can be done without harming oneself terribly.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
16 days ago

Just as a preparatory note for the reader coming to this comment stream:
Talia Perkins is a male who is trans and is under the delusional notion that he is a female. His responses are the sort of hysterically pitched ones that are usually seen from trannies – because only by screaming loudly can they achieve some sort of justification for their own delusion.
Trannies know, at 2 AM when they are staring at the clock, that they are deluded psychopaths who have mutilated themselves either hormonally or surgically. The only thing that they can do is to attempt to justify their own self-mutilation by getting others to self-mutilate. It’s a truly sick view.

Philip Hanna
Philip Hanna
15 days ago
Reply to  Paul Thompson

I am not trans, nor do I know any trans folks, but if they are adults, they are hopefully making their way through life the way they see fit. Sometimes this means making mistakes, sometimes irreversible mistakes. But, to me, these mistakes are theirs to make. I may not “approve” of it (I find a lot of this trans stuff to be dubious, personally), but why are you so awful toward transgender folks? These statements you have been making toward Talia, even if you disagree, are downright cruel. These are still real people, with real problems that they are presumably doing their best to overcome. Chill out, dude.

Dr E C
Dr E C
15 days ago
Reply to  Philip Hanna

Seriously, Paul is the person you’re telling to chill out?!

Jessica Oh
Jessica Oh
15 days ago
Reply to  Philip Hanna

The issue for me and for most actual feminists is that people like Talia are lying.
They are not ‘doing their best’ at all.
They are deliberately trying to cover up the very real dangers of treating mental health problems with hormones.
There are gender cultists that lurk on social media, and on comments deliberately selling death and danger disguised as health care.
Now in its death throes, gender ideology needs these evangelicals even more.
I don’t care what Talia thinks Talia is. I care about the lies being sold. Sold to children and their confused parents. Sold to young lesbians and gay men.
Therein lies the fundamental difference between “transphobia” and actual feminism. The difference that JK Rowling explained before she was declared a witch.
We don’t care how anyone dresses or what they call themselves. But we are under no obligation to participate in their delusions.
We do however care very much when women and LGB people and children have their rights infringed.
Stop assuming that trans identifying people, and trans ‘rights’ activists are a sacred caste who cannot be criticised. That’s infantilisation at best.
And stop virtue-signaling by telling people to ‘chill out’ – start paying attention to what you’re ignoring.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
15 days ago
Reply to  Jessica Oh

And you of the two of us are the only liar here.

You’ll never quote so little as one lie I’ve said here, only quote true things I’ve said which you dislike.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
15 days ago
Reply to  Talia Perkins

Does your grandma know that you are trans? What does she think about your delusional psychosis? I can tell you one thing – your grandma is very very sad at the complete mess you have made of your life.

El Uro
El Uro
15 days ago
Reply to  Jessica Oh

«LGB» activists are not a sacred caste either.
Please remember, “we are here, we are queers, we are coming for your children”.
Please remember, the strange attraction of queers to put on shows for children.

Talia Perkins
Talia Perkins
14 days ago
Reply to  Jessica Oh

“The issue for me and for most actual feminists is that people like Talia are lying.” <– No we are not. If we were, you could point on out. Instead, you lie and make them up.

” I care about the lies being sold.” <– But you can not name any.

You are the liar.

Paul Thompson
Paul Thompson
15 days ago
Reply to  Philip Hanna

Trannies are evangelists. They justify their own delusion by getting others to be deluded. Their delusional statements should under no circumstances be allowed to stand without challenge. Yes, I challenge deluded trannies, because trannies are going after children.

El Uro
El Uro
15 days ago
Reply to  Philip Hanna

they are adults, they are hopefully making their way through life the way they see fit

It’s amazing how blind you are in your reasoning. No one stops a person from quietly going crazy, but it would be strange not to limit the violently insane. Talia shouts “Transgenders are normal” from every corner. This is not normal, this is serious and, as we see in the example of sadistic doctors who mutilate children, this is a dangerous deviation. In the same way, all individuals belonging to the lgbtqia+ community are deviations when they arrange a Pride parade. If there is no pride in being one-eyed or leg-less or arm-less, then why can you be proud of not having offspring along with all the colossal amount of worries that come with it? To be proud of being an human who thinks only about sexual pleasures is monstrous egoism. I’m beginning to guess why pride is considered a mortal sin.

Lynette McDougall
Lynette McDougall
15 days ago

My husband suffered from low testosterone with no identifiable reason for it. His main symptom was brain fog – he couldn’t perform simple tasks that he would normally have breezed through. He was prescribed testosterone replacement and the brain fog disappeared and he is back to normal. When he was diagnosed with prostate cancer a few years ago the doctor wanted him to give up his testosterone replacement but my husband said he wasn’t going back to the brain fog for anything. He said he would rather die from prostate cancer. His treatment with just radiation was successful and he is now cancer free.
An acquaintance transitioned from female to male some years ago. He (she?) was prescribed testosterone and now he has heart problems and has had to give up work.

Ex Nihilo
Ex Nihilo
15 days ago

We quietly passed an epochal inflection point that remains to be completely appreciated. In our history we started from a reality based exclusively upon the notion of God and His laws; this was permanently altered by the Enlightenment version of reality rooted Nature and her laws as the arbiter of reality. Transitionally, Naturalists posited a Nature created by a God who left it to run without further oversight (deists); by the end of the nineteenth century that gave way to God’s death. Nature continued supreme and unrivaled until the post-modern age brought us to a new reality that not only abandons Nature but repudiates it. Homosexuality (which I do not cite to criticize), for example, was not that long ago defended by the assertion that Nature made them so. That is not heard so much now that all forms of identity “realities” are based upon and require only personal choice for validation. Nature has nothing to do with it anymore.

The metric of sainthood in this new outlook is how far can one defy Nature. People now vie for extremely of alteration. Mere homosexuality is now mundane; one must be trans to be au courant. It is not only sexuality. Performance enhancing drugs are big business. The number of students who use amphetamines to achieve their college degrees is stunningly large. The number of tech titans who augment creativity and intellectual productively with LSD and other psychoactive drugs is well-documented. Athletes and PED’s are now cliche and have trickled down to teenagers and up to old geezers artificially-restoring lost youth. Tattoos, piercings, pink hair are all statements that nature should be modified as boldly as possible. All of this is in defiance of the natural and is now deeply rooted in our culture. Nietzsche famously pronounced “God is Dead”. We may also write the obituary of Nature.