Highs, Lows, and Hormones: A Qualitative Metasynthesis of Transgender Individuals’ Experiences Undergoing Gender-Affirming Hormone Therapy

Article


Fowler, James A., Warzywoda, Sarah, Franks, Nia, Mendis, Marini, Lazarou, Mattea, Bisshop, Fiona, Wood, Penny and Dean, Judith A.. 2023. "Highs, Lows, and Hormones: A Qualitative Metasynthesis of Transgender Individuals’ Experiences Undergoing Gender-Affirming Hormone Therapy." Journal of Homosexuality. https://doi.org/10.1080/00918369.2023.2186759
Article Title

Highs, Lows, and Hormones: A Qualitative Metasynthesis of Transgender Individuals’ Experiences Undergoing Gender-Affirming Hormone Therapy

ERA Journal ID6421
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsFowler, James A., Warzywoda, Sarah, Franks, Nia, Mendis, Marini, Lazarou, Mattea, Bisshop, Fiona, Wood, Penny and Dean, Judith A.
Journal TitleJournal of Homosexuality
Number of Pages32
Year2023
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Place of PublicationUnited States
ISSN0091-8369
1540-3602
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1080/00918369.2023.2186759
Web Address (URL)https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00918369.2023.2186759
AbstractGender Affirming Hormone Therapy (GAHT) is a key therapeutic approach which aims to help trans and gender diverse (or simply “trans”) individuals’ transition from their sex-presumed-at-birth to their experienced gender identity. Previous reviews have focused on synthesizing quantitative experiences; however, a qualitative lens is important to understand the personal journey of GAHT. This review provides a qualitative meta-synthesis of the experiences of trans people around the world who have undergone GAHT to elicit contextualized understanding of the changes experienced. Systematic searches of eight databases identified an initial 2670 papers, refined to a final 28 papers. Overall, findings suggested that the GAHT journey is unique and elicited a myriad of changes which, whilst challenging at times, were life-changing and brought about positive psychological, physical, and social changes. Other themes explored GAHT not being treated as a fix-all for associated mental health issues, the rules that govern appraisal of physical changes, how privilege and social identity evolve, and the power of affirmation. This work offers important recommendations to improve the care offered to trans people undergoing GAHT. Namely, person-centered support is essential, and peer-navigation may be a useful future direction to explore.
KeywordsHormone therapy; transition; systematic review; qualitative; transgender
ANZSRC Field of Research 20204299. Other health sciences
Byline AffiliationsUniversity of Queensland
School of Psychology and Wellbeing
Centre for Health Research
Institute for Resilient Regions
Holdsworth House Medical Practice, Australia
Alexander Heights Family Practice, Australia
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