We get a great many requests for information on Hormones. We urge anyone who is considering this step not to do so lightly or without the proper medical information and attention. Introduction of chemicals into the body, especially for the purpose of affecting physical changes is a serious matter, whether those chemicals are prescription medications or over-the-counter, "natural" suppliments and should not be done without regular checkups by a physician that you trust. Below is an article presented at one of our Phoenix meetings.
Some Things You Should Know Abou Hormone Therapy for Male-to-female Trans People
compiled by Holly Boswell.
Chemical intervention in one's hormonal system has profound, sometimes unpredictable consequences. Given variations in physiology and genetic backgrounds, each person may respond differently. Whether administered orally, transdermally, or by injection, we must continue to be monitored at least annually by an endocrinologist or other qualified medical professional.
Injection should be considered over oral use, so as not to compromise the liver over time.
A mild but continuous regimen of enteric aspirin is strongly advised to prevent blood clotting.
Smoking and most alcohol use must be curtailed.
Certain effects, such as breast development and genital atrophy, tend to be irreversible after a few years.
Generic and non-domestic forms of medication can differ drastically from name brands in regard to quality and dosafe, and should generally be avoided.
One should be patient in achieving effects of the therapy, and take as modest a dosage as possible.
In most cases, optimum feminization can be achieved from estrogen, without androgen blockers.
If only breasts are desired, implants would entail far less impact on the body.
The chemical shift will produce a subtle, inner feeling associated with feminity.
Secondary sex traits (breasts, softer skin, finer body hair...) will develop, at least partially.
One may be able to pass a little more easily, or maybe not.
The ability to cry is enhanced, thereby providing emotional release.
Masculine temperment is softened.
Certain Allergies (e. g. hay fever) may be relieved.
In later life, enlargement of the prostate may be relieved or prevented.
More likely to experience depression and emotional instability.
Loss of muscle mass and significant weight gain over time.
Does not alter the voice, eliminate the beard or balding.
Will produce significant genital atrophy and eventual sterility.
Impairs sexual functioning and reduces the libido profoundly, often to zero.
Can produce blood clots which may result in stroke, heart attack, or pulmonary embolus.
Can produce cancers in breasts, liver and gall bladder.
Can contribute to osteoporis in later life, like other women.
Creates a serious dependency on a foreign substance to maintain normal hormonal functioning.
If discontinued, one will experience menopausal withdrawal, possibly followed by a return of pubescent, hormonally-driven angst.
The side effects of long-term use are virtually unknown, since there is no reliable data yet available.