So yesterday I had my appointment with the doctor regarding HRT. Now given this is a pandemic situation I was not sure if it was a teleconference or Jessie puts on the N95 mask. I was given the option of phone or video conference and as such I went for video because I like to see people in these situations. So at the appointed time the video chat started and we had some sound issue, seemed to coming from my end. This make sense and also no sense as I have two web cams each with microphones, had a my headset on with microphone, and I still have a studio mic as an option. But the appointment went well and is based upon the informed consent model.
So what does informed consent mean in the medical area? Well it traces its way back to WWII and the horrors perpetuated by the Nazis in the camps. They tortured people to death for medical research is the really short version. The Nuremberg Trials brought these horrors to the world and eventually lead to the Nuremberg Code. The Nuremberg Code is the basis of medical treatment and experimentation and at the core is Informed Consent. Consent is an easy thing to define, yes or no. Informed is a little more complex but it means that those consenting should know what is to be done and the ramifications of going forth. American drug ads are an attempt at informed consent with their long list of side effects, I say attempt as there is much debate if this meets the informed consent level hence talk to your doctor.
So what does this model mean for HRT? Well what was in place previously with needing letters and a diagnoses from psychiatrists for HRT and one needing to prove that they are suffering from gender dysphoria. Under this model is you are of age of consent, are told of the effects of the treatment, and are mentally stable then it is your choice to have this treatment. Basically the old way was convincing them to say yes and now they are checking to see if there is a reason to say no. Many reasons could be in place to say no, mental instability is the primary one but also the health ramifications as simply put maybe your health is not conducive to HRT and too risky. Lifestyle choices such as smoking, alcohol consumption, drug use, and exercise are all taken into account. With all the labs shut down aside from critical tests this could prove to be an issue as they need to check blood levels, kidney and liver function, and many other things prior to treatment. Luckily my Doctor had run full panels just before Christmas so I was good to go. One minor hiccup was my blood pressure as it just had not been checked in a little while, or at least nothing written down. With everything on lock down even the pharmacy with their checkers are on lock down. So I went out and got a home monitor because really approaching 40 and the spouse over 40 we should keep track of this any way. My first test was very high, second, third, and fourth this morning are all just slightly above normal. This could be health related or stress.
So where does it go from here? Well I have an appointment next month to follow up since she is sending some information and two prescriptions for electrolysis and voice therapy so the health plan covers it. I check my blood pressure and report back to her and then end of May if I still want it I get HRT.
So the path to hormones is shorter and easier than I thought. This has to do with a shift in models after all 5 years ago this would have been a two year ordeal at the minimum. So how am I feeling now that it is getting more real? Well actually pretty good, I am looking forward to it and I would be lying if I did not say I am slightly apprehensive but just a bit. And again as I said before and as I discussed with the doctor yesterday I can stop it if I want.