ESSM Congress 2022

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Jul 4, 2022, 2:53:50 AM
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Life isn't binary - The EPATH session

Session chair: Guy Tsjoen Ghent University Hospital, Ghent, Belgium
Emmanuele Jannini University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy
Shortcut: RT-04
Date: Friday, 18 February, 2022, 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Room: Virtual Room 1
Session type: Round Table


Click on an contribution to preview the abstract content.

2:30 PM RT-04-01

History and Cultural Diversity (#375)

S. Monro1

1 University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, United Kingdom

2:40 PM RT-04-02

Nonbinary or genderqueer genders - psychological aspects (#376)

C. Richards1

1  Regent’s University London School of Psychotherapy and Psychology, London, United Kingdom

2:50 PM RT-04-03

Hormonal treatment strategies tailored to non-binary transgender individuals (#317)

A. Fisher1

1 University of Florence, Florence, Italy

3:00 PM RT-04-04

Surgical request (#344)

M. Ozer1

1 Amsterdam University, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Some societies are moving away from a binary concept of gender and are slowly further embracing a continuous concept of gender, in which each person possesses various degrees of both masculine and feminine characteristics. Associated with this societal development healthcare providers working within gender identity medicine and surgery are seeing more patients with a non-binary gender along a spectrum. This influences treatment requests - increasing the incidence of atypical requests. How to handle these?

Although we agree with this development towards accepting gender diversity and the treatment of gender incongruence from such a perspective for the wellbeing of our patients, we also think that from a medical/surgical perspective, the principle of non-maleficence remains of paramount importance. In other words; How do we ensure that we are not doing harm if we accommodate these variant requests?

Based upon an analysis of the literature and preliminary data from an Epath 2019 workshop, three challenges of requests for non-binary gender affirmative surgery are differentiated: (1) ethical questions; (2) outcome unknowns and (3) the handling of uncertainty / anxiety of the surgeons themselves. This presentation discusses these three challenges. With special attention to the handling of these challenges to respect the first duty of a doctor -to “Do no harm”.

It will be argued, that ideally these three challenges should be answered. However, given the lack of outcome research on non-binary gender affirmative surgery, it is important that surgeons weigh the risks and gains of surgery in dialogue with their patients so that patients are well informed. Furthermore, it is important that surgeons recognize and handle own uncertainties and anxieties adequately.

To conclude, this is not only an ethical debate, as it is also a discussion about surgeons’ fears.

3:10 PM RT-04-05

Discussion (LIVE)