Can a trans woman get breast cancer

Trans women are more likely to develop breast cancer

People refer to themselves as trans women when they were born in a male body but feel they are women. Those who not only accept the female gender identity mentally, but also want to adapt their physical appearance to it, begin hormone therapy. Under medical supervision, female hormones are taken over a longer period of time, which changes the body. In transgender women, among other things, the breast begins to grow, transgender men experience a growing beard.

Study of the breast cancer risk of trans women

There is a gender clinic in Amsterdam that 95 percent of all transgender people in the Netherlands visit when treatment is desired. The scientists were able to use the therapy data of 2,260 transgender women for a current study.

Within this group, 15 people have now developed breast cancer. The breast cancer had to be treated invasively. Three other trans women were also diagnosed with breast cancer, but so far without the need for invasive measures.

18 cancer cases sound like little at first, but measured against the number of 2,260 people, they are a high risk rate. The rate is 46.7 times higher than that of men who do not undergo hormone therapy. This shows how risky long-term use of the artificial hormones is.

Hormone administration increases the risk of breast cancer

Most transgender women receive high doses of estrogen and antiandrogens at the same time during therapy to reduce the body's own male hormones. The development of the female breast itself is not likely to trigger an increased risk, because the researchers compared the risk in the 2,260 trans women with that of a born woman, the risk was even 70 percent lower than in the normal female population.

Cancer diagnoses were made seven to 37 years after the start of therapy. On average, those affected were 50 years old. The researchers therefore advise trans women during hormone treatment to undergo breast cancer screening for the first time after five years. If this turns out negative, you should regularly take advantage of the checkups offered for women aged 50 and over.