Healthcare Watchdog Group Praises Doctors Who Warn ‘No Medical Evidence’ Childhood Gender Transition Prevents Suicide

An organization of physicians and others concerned about the politicization of healthcare is praising the “doctors around the world” who are “speaking up” about the “significant” risks associated with childhood medical gender transition and the lack of evidence supporting the claim that transgender hormone drugs reduce suicide risk.

Dr. Stanley Goldfarb, chairman of Do No Harm, wrote Monday in an email to subscribers of the recent “game-changing” letter to the editors, published in the Wall Street Journal by 21 clinicians and researchers from South Africa, the UK, Sweden, Norway, Belgium, France, Switzerland, and the United States, that challenges the Endocrine Society’s latest statements on what radical transgender activists call “gender-affirming care.”

In his email message, Goldfarb applauded the doctors and researchers who challenged Endocrine Society President Dr. Stephen Hammes’s “misleading claim that more than 2,000 studies published since 1975 validate his belief” that transgender hormone treatments “improve the well-being of children with gender dysphoria and reduce the risk of suicide,” he wrote.

Hammes wrote in a Journal letter to the editor dated July 5 that a recent op-ed titled “The Endocrine Society’s Dangerous Transgender Politicization,” penned by Do No Harm senior fellow Dr. Roy Eappen and the organization’s research director Ian Kingsbury, “ignores scientific evidence and the conclusions reached by the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics and other reputable medical organizations.”

“More than 2,000 studies published since 1975 form a clear picture: Gender-affirming care improves the well-being of transgender and gender-diverse people and reduces the risk of suicide,” Hammes claimed.

The signers of the letter challenging Hammes, however, observed:

Every systematic review of evidence to date, including one published in the Journal of the Endocrine Society, has found the evidence for mental-health benefits of hormonal interventions for minors to be of low or very low certainty. By contrast, the risks are significant and include sterility, lifelong dependence on medication and the anguish of regret. For this reason, more and more European countries and international professional organizations now recommend psychotherapy rather than hormones and surgeries as the first line of treatment for gender-dysphoric youth.

“Dr. Hammes’s claim that gender transition reduces suicides is contradicted by every systematic review, including the review published by the Endocrine Society, which states, ‘We could not draw any conclusions about death by suicide,’” the signers continued. “There is no reliable evidence to suggest that hormonal transition is an effective suicide-prevention measure.”

Among the letter’s U.S. signers is Dr. Stephen B. Levine of Case Western University, lead researcher of a study, reported by The Star News Network in August 2022 that concluded the often “inaccurate” and “incomplete” informed consent process conducted by the transgender industry clinicians has been encouraged by an activist “alarmist” narrative whereby parents are informed their hesitance to consent to their child’s transgender medical treatment could likely result in his or her suicide.

“The question of suicide is inappropriately handled,” Levine and his colleagues wrote:

Suicide among trans-identified youth is significantly elevated compared to the general population of youth (Biggs, 2022; de Graaf et al., 2020). However, the “transition or die” narrative, whereby parents are told that their only choice is between a “live trans daughter or a dead son” (or vice-versa), is both factually inaccurate and ethically fraught. Disseminating such alarmist messages hurts the majority of trans-identified youth who are not at risk for suicide. It also hurts the minority who are at risk, and who, as a result of such misinformation, may forgo evidence-based suicide prevention interventions in the false hopes that transition will prevent suicide.

“The ‘transition or die’ narrative regards suicidal risk in trans-identified youth as a different phenomenon than suicidal risk among other youth,” Levine noted. “Making them an exception falsely promises the parents that immediate transition will remove the risk of suicidal self-harm.”

The Journal letter’s signers noted the “unfortunate” situation in the United States due to the “politicization of transgender healthcare.”

“The way to combat it is for medical societies to align their recommendations with the best available evidence—rather than exaggerating the benefits and minimizing the risks,” they urged.

“This commentary is significant in the fight to protect children from gender ideology, and like them, we are deeply concerned with the politicization of healthcare and how it violates the core of the hippocratic oath to ‘Do No Harm,’” Goldfarb said.

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Susan Berry, PhD is national education editor at The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]




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