New information suggests that young girls are initiating treatment to transition into boys more often than their male counterparts. This comes as the popularity of double mastectomy surgeries among minors rapidly increases.
“A pattern of uneven ratios by assigned sex has been reported in gender clinics, with adolescents assigned female at birth (AFAB) initiating care 2.5–7.1 times more frequently as compared to adolescents who are assigned male at birth,” according to an article in the International Journal of Transgender Health, published online on Sept. 15.
Clinics that perform gender transition procedures in the United States told Reuters that the ratio of their patients prior to transition is about 2:1 female to male. The publication noted that the phenomenon has also been reported in other places, namely Europe, Canada, and Australia.
A recent study found that chest surgeries on minors increased exponentially between 2016 and 2019. Researchers from Vanderbilt University found that chest reconstruction surgeries skyrocketed by 389%, from 100 to 489.
This trend of female prevalence in seeking transgender treatment is a reversal from the past. A Dutch gender clinic study found that between 1989 and 2005, more than half of its patients were young males. However, Reuters reports that since 2016, three-quarters of the clinic’s patients have been young girls.
With the onset of social media, information and trends can travel much more quickly. Reuters recently profiled a transgender child (who is biologically female and identifies as a male) and how the child was inspired to have chest surgery after seeing a doctor’s video on TikTok. Six months later, Samuel Kulovitz traveled to have the procedure, with parental approval. The child also said the social media platform Tumblr had an effect on the decision to come out as transgender.
“I kept asking myself, ‘Why do you want to look like him?’” Kulovitz told Reuters of a Tumblr user.
A recent study revealed that the share of people identifying as transgender is significantly increasing, with 1.4% of 13- to 17-year-olds saying they are transgender. This is compared to only 0.5% of all U.S. adults.