Hormone therapy (HRT) can have positive and important impacts on a transgender person’s quality of life. First, you need to make the decision that you are truly ready to start your hormone therapy. Once you start, some changes cannot be undone. One question to ask is how will HRT impact my life? If you make the decision that HRT is right for you, the next step is finding a healthcare provider (HCP) to prescribe your HRT and monitor your therapy. It is important to find an HCP you feel comfortable with and one who has experience in prescribing HRT for gender transition.
Your HCP will perform a physical assessment prior to starting your HRT and may also request a mental health assessment. HCPs have a responsibility to be sure you are making an informed decision and that you meet the physical and mental standards for eligibility and readiness for HRT. Following the mental health assessment, the mental health professional will then make recommendations to your provider. Your HCP will then do the physical exam, order baseline laboratory testing, and discuss the process of initiation of your HRT. Once complete, your HCP will make recommendations on dosages and frequency of your HRT and how you will be monitored during your transition. Ongoing care will include follow up appointments with your HCP to monitor your hormone levels and the effectiveness of your therapy. You may also be followed by your mental health provider in certain circumstances.
Remember, HRT is a lifelong commitment and requires monitoring to optimize your transition and your overall health. Finding the appropriate HCP is an important first step to building a happier, healthier quality of life for you!
If you’re interested in scheduling an appointment to discuss beginning HRT, please give us a call at 404.231.4431.
Terry Hackworth, NP‐C