May 082014
 

CC BY 2.0) - flickr user stevendepoloA little belated, but here’s the GSM health news that came out around April this year, in no particular order…

  • There was a new meta analysis of intestinal vaginoplasties published in April. This meta analysis overall found that rate and severity of complications was “low”, with stenosis the most common complication. There were no reports of cancer. Sexual satisfaction was high, but there were no quality of life measures reported. Quality of studies were reported to be low, though, and there was a distinct lack of use of standardized measures. Source.
  • Oncology Times released a review of cancer and cancer screenings in transgender people. Highly recommend you take a look at the source.
  • A study finds that trans men on testosterone have lower levels of anxiety, depression and anger than trans men not on testosterone. Source.
  • A review of current hormonal transition effects and aging determined that, based on current data, “Older [trans people] can commence cross-sex hormone treatment without disproportionate risks.” They note that monitoring for cardiovascular health is especially important for trans women, especially those who are on progesterones. Strength or type of hormones may need to be modified in order to minimize risk. Source.
  • As much of the sex positive community has known for a long time, the BMI of cis women is (in general) not correlated with sexual activity. Source.
  • In Croatian medical students knowledge about homosexuality was correlated with positive attitudes. Source.
  • Science is awesome! The Lancet reported success in engineering vaginas for 4 women with MRKHS. No complications over the 8 years of follow up, and satisfaction with sexual functioning. Fingers crossed that this technique can be used in the future for many more women! Source.
  • Remember that sexual orientation is not the same as behavior? In a recent analysis of previously collected data, 11.2% of heterosexual-identified sexually active (presumably cisgender) women reported ever having a same-sex partner. Another way of looking at it: 1 in 10 straight women have had sex with another woman. Source.
  • Don’t forget about aftercare and cuddling! Post-sex affection appears to be correlated with relationship satisfaction. Source.
  • Unsurprising but sad: Young LGB people are more likely to binge drink alcohol when they’ve been exposed to discrimination and homophobia. Source.

 

Apr 012014
 

CC - see linked URLBeen a busy month here. First, let’s have the news!

Transgender

  • A study has failed to find support for the theory that transgender people can be separated into different typologies based on sexual orientation. Source.
  • Gender dysphoria has been found to be correlated with autism/asperger’s and attention deficit disorder. Source.
  • Among trans people seeking care in the emergency department, 52% have at least one negative experience. 32% heard insulting language and 31% were told their provider didn’t know how to provide care. These statistics were gathered in London, Ontario. Source
  • Cross-sex hormones change cortical thickness in the brain. Source.
  • A meta analysis found that the type and dose of estrogen does not impact breast size for trans women. They also did not find an effect, positive or negative, for progestins. Source.
  • A panel lead by a former U.S. surgeon general has urged the US military to eliminate its ban on transgender service members. Source.

Sexuality

  • Pap smears may soon be replaced by HPV-only testing. Source.
  • 43% of young adult and teenaged men report having experienced sexual coercion. 95% of those were initiated by a woman. 18% of those incidents were physical force, 31% verbal, 26% via seduction, and 7% via drugs/alcohol. Tell me again how sexual violence is a woman’s problem. Source.
  • Shout Out Health posted their reminder of how you can find a gay-friendly health care provider

~~

On an administrative note, I’ll be attending a medical school in Connecticut come the Fall. I don’t know yet what that’ll mean for post frequency here at Open Minded Health, but be warned that things may shake up a little bit.

As always…  Stay healthy, stay safe, and have fun!

Dec 042013
 

November news - CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 - flickr user dtanis

It’s the beginning of a new month. You all know what that means – news roundup time!

Here are some interesting news articles from the last month:

  • An Australian study found that men who had sex with men don’t take erectile dysfunction medications in order to take risks. Rather, they take the medications in order to heighten pleasure. Source.
  • Unprotected sex between men appears to be on the rise in the United States. Please, be safe out there. Get tested, ask your partner(s) to get tested, and use protection when appropriate. Source.
  • A genetic difference was found between transgender men and cisgender women in a recent study. Trans men had more repeats of a gene that controls one type of estrogen receptor. Source.
  • A study found that trans men on testosterone undecanoate show signs of impaired mitochondria in their leukocytes. This was an oddly specific study. Whether this effect on leukocytes has any health effects was not specified. Source.
  • Ethical recommendations for vaginoplasties on minors were released. I’ll be grabbing a copy soon and will report on them. Source.
  • There are still too many pap smears being done. People over the age of 65 with no history of cervical or other reproductive cancer do not generally benefit from pap smears. Nor do people who have had hysterectomies (including removal of the cervix). Current cervical cancer screening guidelines are here, and applies to anybody who has a cervix, not just women! Source.
  • Only 15% of surveyed primary care providers reported regularly asking their patients about sexual dysfunction. When they did ask, most asked because of diabetes, use of a medication with known sexual side effects, and for reproductive reasons. 3/4th of the responders did not regularly check relevant guidelines, partially due to lack of time and difficulty of access. Source.
  • Men who felt they didn’t have enough privacy during sex had more sexual dysfunctions, including difficulty maintaining an erection. Source.

Lastly, Frederick Sanger died this month. Dr. Sanger’s research was key to understanding the structure of insulin, RNA and DNA. He was one of the few scientists who earned two Nobel prizes. His work will not be forgotten.

Nov 052013
 

News for the month of October - CC BY 2.0 - flickr user  cygnus921It’s that time of month again! No, not when we try to take over the world… it’s time for the monthly news! In no particular order, then, here we go:

  • Analysis of herbal supplements finds that many are contaminated with species not listed in the ingredients label. Herbs are typically classified as supplements in the United States, and are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration the way medications are. The FDA website has more on the regulation of herbsSource.
  • One dose of Gardasil may be enough to protect against cervical cancer (but please remember to follow your physician’s instructions about vaccines!). Source. At the same time, the HPV vaccines may be less effective for people of African heritage than for people of European heritage. Source.
  • More evidence that monthly changes in sex hormones in cisgender women are associated with changes in sex drive. Source.
  • Germany’s “indeterminate” birth certificate sex designation law comes into effect. The “Indeterminate” marker is, from what I understand, intended to denote intersex babies, not transgender people. The BBC did a fairly good summary of some community reactions. Source.
  • Low prolactin levels in cisgender men as they age has been correlated with reduced sexuality and sexual functioning. Low prolactin levels were also correlated with general unwellness. Prolactin is a hormone most well known for being involved with lactation in breast-feeding parents, but has other effects too. Source.
  • A new study examining sexual satisfaction in women with complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS) or Mayer-Rokitansky-Küster-Hauser Syndrome (MRKH Syndrome, aka Müllerian agenesis). Women with CAIS reported less sexual satisfaction and confidence than women with MRKH Syndrome, who mostly reported being satisfied with their sex life. The abstract on this paper is fairly scarce so I’ll try to grab a copy for better examination. Source.
  • A study in Ontario, Canada found that 1/3 of trans people needed emergency medical services in 2012, but only 71% were actually able to receive it. 1/4th of those in the survey reported avoiding the emergency room because they are trans, and just over half needed to educate their provider. Source.
  • Another study has found a decrease in psychopathology (i.e., symptoms of mental illness, such as depression or anxiety) when trans people transition. The biggest drop was just after starting hormone therapy. Source.
  • A study on the changes in sexual desire/activity in trans people was published. In a nutshell, sex drive went down for trans women with hormone therapy but recovered a bit after surgery (compared with those who wanted/planned surgery but hadn’t had it yet). In contrast, trans men generally had their sex drive go up with hormones/surgery. Source.
Oct 012013
 

CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 - flickr user tireboushtroumpfTime to summarize the September news!

General news:

  • Children of same-sex parents were found to be 39-45% less likely to have insurance than children of opposite-sex parents. The difference is less in states with civil unions, domestic partnerships or marriage. Source.
  • A new study found that estrogen is required for male sexual functioning. So much for the idea of estrogen as a “female” hormone and testosterone as a “male” hormone… Source.
  • A study found that men who have sex with men have sex as often as men who only have sex with women. Frequent sex was correlated with being younger, having a shorter relationship and having a primary partner. Less frequent sex was correlated with being of African descent/Black and identifying as heterosexual or bisexual. Source.
  • A study came out from Australia looking at resilience among LGBT youth. They found that though LGBT youth experienced more discrimination and suicide attempts as a result of discrimination, they were much more likely to respond to discrimination with activism activities than their heterosexual/cisgender peers. Source.

Transgender/transsexual specific news:

  • A review found that the risk of breast cancer is not elevated for trans people. Read more hereSource.
  • A study of 24 people found that 95% of them were satisfied with a suprapubic phalloplasty, when they were able to choose their type of phalloplasty. Source.
  • Toys R Us is beginning to de-gender their stores… at least in the UK. A great gift for trans and gender non-conforming kids. Source.
  • A group called Feminists Fighting Transphobia released a statement in support of trans-inclusive feminism. If you agree with their statement, please sign it! Source.

New resources I discovered this month:

Also keep an eye out on the OMH Facebook, Google+, Twitter and Tumblr. Lots more stuff coming!