dr Ximena Lopez is suing the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center after Children’s Medical Center Dallas ordered her clinic to stop giving children with gender dysphoria cross-sex hormones and so-called “puberty-blocking” drugs.
Lopez alleges that UTSW Medical Center abruptly stopped providing services to new patients in November 2021, and she alleges that the new policy, along with Texas law, violates the university’s nondiscrimination policy.
“Someone, organization or agency is illegally attempting to review the independent medical judgment of Dr. to disrupt or control Lopez,” the petition reads, according to NBC 5 DFW. She accuses the center of discriminating against patients based on gender identity.
A spokesman for UTSW Medical Center told the Dallas Morning News that GENECIS — Lopez’s clinic, founded in 2015 — is still screening and treating new patients and providing psychological and counseling care, but the clinic has begun referring patients to outside practices, if they are looking for cross-sex hormones or “puberty blockers”.
“These new patients and their families who are seeking puberty blockers and hormone replacement therapy after being diagnosed with gender dysphoria are now being referred to an outside practice for this treatment,” the medical center said.
“The decision to stop offering puberty blockers and hormone therapies to new pediatric patients was based on a variety of factors, including growing concern in the medical community about our limited understanding of the long-term effects — both psychological and physical — on children who are being treated will this treatment,” the statement continued. “We believe that there are no controlled studies that have clearly described the efficacy and safety of these treatments. According to the scientific journal Transgender Health, as of 2021: No drug has an FDA indication for use in adolescents with gender dysphoria.”
“Media attention and political and scientific controversies, as well as UT Southwestern’s status as a government agency, were considered in the months leading up to these joint decisions,” the statement added. “Physicians from UT Southwestern provide pediatric care in children’s health facilities under our affiliate agreement.”
The medical center flatly denied the allegations of discrimination.
“UT Southwestern is committed to providing equal opportunities for all members of the campus community and maintaining an environment free from unlawful discrimination, harassment and retaliation,” the center said in a statement. “In accordance with the rules and regulations of the Board of Regents, the policies of the UT System, and applicable federal and state laws, no person may be excluded from participation in UT Southwestern services, programs, denied benefits, or discriminated against. and activities based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability, genetic information, protected veteran status, citizenship status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.”
Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas ordered the State Department of Family and Protection Services to investigate cases in which Texas children “underwent a variety of elective sex reassignment procedures, including reassignment surgeries that may result in sterilizations, mastectomies, removal of otherwise healthy body parts, and the administration of puberty blockers or supraphysiological doses of testosterone or estrogen.”
This order quotes a legal opinion by Attorney General Ken Paxton, R-Texas, who found controversial transgender cases constitute child abuse. The report cited numerous physicians and other medical sources who claimed that “there is no evidence that mental health improves over the long term or that hormonal or surgical interventions reduce suicide rates.”
A judge has issued an injunction blocking the policy.
While many medical associations have instituted various procedures for children who identify as transgender and who are diagnosed with gender dysphoria (the persistent and painful condition of identifying as the opposite sex from one’s biological sex), some physicians have prior to Warned about the use of hormone treatments that have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for gender dysphoria.
Most hormone treatments “are only approved by the FDA as puberty blockers in children for the treatment of central precocious puberty and not for the treatment of gender dysphoria.” dr Michael Laidlawa independent private practice Endocrinologist in Rocklin, Calif., told Fox News in December 2021.
“Central precocious puberty is a medical condition in which a child begins puberty at an unusually young age, say 4 years of age,” Laidlaw explained. “Drugs like Supprelin LA are used to stop this abnormal puberty. Once the child has reached a typical age for puberty (eg, 11 or 12 years), the medication is discontinued and normal puberty resumes.”
“The off-label use of these gender dysphoria drugs is completely different,” the endocrinologist added. “In this case, the healthy child has already started normal puberty. But then the drug is administered to block normal puberty. Blocking normal puberty has numerous unhealthy side effects, including loss of normal bone development, interfering with the normal development of the brain and society, and most importantly, causing infertility and sexual dysfunction. Many of these effects will be irreversible.”