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Old 04-08-2013
MacShreach MacShreach is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2012
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Some great crack above, with the usual (for TS forums) crosstalk and missing of point. Anyway 'castration' which is usually called orchidectomy or orchiectomy, is useful mainly because the use of androgen blockers is regarded as being hazardous in the longer term.

Hormonal transition for mtf requires two completely different processes: 1, the suppression of the effects of testosterone, which masculinise the body and 2, the use of female hormones, principally oestrogen, to feminise it.

Some transwomen who self-med blitz with so much oestrogen that their testosterone just can't get through, but this risks liver damage and in any case is inefficient. Furthermore, oestrogen is implicated in certain forms of cancer, notably breast cancer, especially at higher levels. Using a proper androgen blocker, eg androcur or spirolactone, stops the testosterone and allows feminisation at lower and therefore safer doses of oestrogen. But the androgen blockers also have risks, which include memory loss, osteoporosis and muscular atrophy.

Ordinary women produce testosterone, just not so much; getting the anti-androgen balance right to replicate this level in the mtf is not at all easy. (Too much anti-androgen=no testosterone=problems; not enough=masculinisation.) This is one reason why self-medicating is a Bad Idea.

This female testosterone is not, obviously, produced in the testes but elsewhere, and it is also produced in these places in the male body. Removing an mtf transsexual's testes allows her body to self-regulate the testosterone at about the female level with no androgen blockers. (Essentially, the endocrine system is fooled into thinking the body is female, but lacks the ability to produce female levels of oestrogen itself. So, after orchidectomy, an mtf's body is very like that of a woman who has had her ovaries removed. Remember, we all began as females. The body just reverts.)

So 'castration' allows the use of smaller and safer doses of oestrogen to allow the feminisation required for mtf transition. (Note: anyone who has been castrated will have to take HRT to prevent problems. This was an issue for many early transitioners, notably April Ashley, who developed severe osteoporosis because she did not.)

Do you see? (Phew.)

In broader terms the physiological trick in SRS is done by the removal of the testes. The actual construction of the vagina is just cosmetic surgery, though I realise how important it can be for many girls. But that's really a psychological issue to do with her sense of gender and self, and not the fairly mechanical processes of her endocrine system.

Some girls report that after orchidectomy their erectile ability recovers. This is probably because they had previously been over-suppressing their testosterone. Others, however, report the opposite or no change.

BTW that nonsense above about skin--the differences between male and female skin is caused by hormonal action. Any transsexual will tell you the differences in her skin and hair are obvious when she is on hormones. These have no effect whatsoever, however, on underlying skin tone, which is genetic, not hormonal, in origin. In other words, under controlled oestrogen therapy, a scandic male will become a scandic female, a dark-skinned male will become a dark-skinned female.
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