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Critical Considerations: The Dark Side of Testosterone for Transgender Individuals

In my professional journey, I've often found myself called to serve patient populations with whom I initially had minimal experience. This led me to establish American Frontline Nurses, an organization dedicated to assisting individuals abandoned by the medical industrial complex after enduring egregious abuse, neglect, and emotional trauma in the name of healthcare. Among these marginalized groups, the transgender community stands out, facing an urgent need for advocacy services amid a scarcity of research into their complications and adverse reactions.

My involvement with the transgender community began during the Monkeypox Outbreak of 2021. In response, I educated over 10,000 individuals from the transgender community in the Philippines and Taiwan on monkeypox, its treatment, and behavioral mitigation strategies. Since then, my work with transgender individuals has predominantly come through referrals to American Frontline Nurses, as those familiar with our organization connect us with transgender individuals who are being ignored, gaslit, or outright abandoned by their medical providers.

One such case is Matt Rey, referred to me by our partners at Gays Against Groomers, an organization committed to safeguarding children from inappropriate gender transitioning practices and other activities. Matt began experiencing Tourettes-like symptoms shortly after being placed on testosterone cypionate in the United States.

Testosterone cypionate, commonly used to treat hypogonadism in males, has seen off-label use in "gender-affirming care" for those experiencing "gender dysphoria." Despite being touted as a "life-saving" medication, it comes with a range of adverse side effects, including:

  1. Heart Effects Warning: Short-term studies indicate an increased risk of heart attack, stroke, or even death.

  2. Liver Problems Warning: Prolonged use at high doses may elevate the risk of liver issues such as cancer, cholestatic hepatitis, and jaundice.

  3. Blood Clot Warning: Testosterone cypionate may heighten the risk of blood clots in the lungs and deep veins due to its impact on coagulation factors.

  4. Thyroid Deficiency: It can decrease concentrations of thyroxine-binding globulin, affecting T4 serum concentrations.

  5. Suicidal Ideations: Clinical trials have shown associations with depression, suicidal ideation, and behavior, including completed suicides.

Additionally, the involvement of Sun Pharmaceuticals, an India-based company operating in the U.S., adds another layer of concern. Notably, their recent recalls raise questions about the safety and quality control of pharmaceutical products:

  • In 2016, Bupropion hydrochloride extended-release tablets were recalled due to failed dissolution specifications.

  • A 2019 recall involved Vecuronium Bromide injection due to glass presence in vials.

  • In 2022, Kroger Brand Acetaminophen batches were recalled for failing child-resistant packaging requirements.

  • In 2023, testosterone cypionate 1ml vials were recalled due to microbial excursion resulting from laboratory error.

  • Another 2023 recall affected 24,194 vials of infertility medication Fyremadel due to glass particulates in vials.

This information underscores the need for heightened awareness, research, and advocacy to ensure the well-being of transgender individuals and to scrutinize the safety practices within the pharmaceutical industry. We urge everyone who has loved ones on testosterone cypionate by Sun Pharmaceuticals to speak with their provider and pharmacists about switching to a different testosterone manufacturer.