Top surgery enhances trans youths’ quality of life, according to a new study.

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This week, amid a flurry of anti-trans rhetoric, a new study was released that supported the advantages of top surgery for young transmasculine individuals. The surgery is linked to significant improvements in chest dysphoria, gender congruence, and body image in transmasculine and non-binary kids, according to research.
Researchers from Northwestern Medicine compared two groups of patients aged 14 to 24 in the study, which was published on Monday in the peer-reviewed journal JAMA Pediatrics. One group of 36 patients underwent top surgery, while the control group of 34 patients underwent gender-affirming treatment without top surgery. The individuals who underwent the treatment reported significantly less chest dysphoria than previously three months after surgery, whereas the levels in the other patients remained around the same.

In a statement to CBS News, Dr. Sumanas Jordan, the director of the Gender Pathways Program at Northwestern Medicine and the study’s lead author, said, “When we compared the outcomes of patients who received gender-affirming top surgery to those who did not, we recognized that surgery significantly improved the quality of life for patients”.

Chest dysphoria in young trans and gender non-conforming people has been studied before. Previous research has demonstrated that chest dysphoria is a common problem that almost entirely disappears following top surgery. Gender-affirming treatment and top surgery, however, have come under growing criticism in recent years, despite their clear advantages. According to Bloomberg Law, about 60% of all proposed LGBTQ2S+ health-related legislation in 2022 alone sought to outlaw or restrict transgender healthcare.

In the political, legal, and public discourses, gender-affirming care has come under threat. An article regarding the rise of gender-affirming surgery for young trans people appeared in the New York Times on Monday, underlining the possibility of regretting such procedures. Advocates swiftly criticized the article for being transphobic.

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