(LifeSiteNews) — The Endocrine Society’s standards for gender-confused kids rest on “flimsy evidence” and are being used to push a “scientifically baseless movement,” an endocrinologist recently warned in the Wall Street Journal.
Dr. Roy Eappen made the claim in the Wall Street Journal on June 28, criticizing the Endocrine Society’s misleading claims. He noted that its alleged findings that “transitioning” kids is beneficial was used by a federal judge to justify blocking an Arkansas law that protected kids from the chemical and surgical procedures.
Eappen wrote, along with Ian Kingsbury of the medical advocacy group Do No Harm, that “over the past decade transgender activists have co-opted the Endocrine Society and other professional organizations to promote such treatments for adolescents and even young children.”
“Their guidelines are based on flimsy evidence, giving the appearance that invasive and irreversible treatments are beneficial for young patients despite a growing body of evidence to the contrary,” the op-ed stated. “The guidelines have been used by lawmakers in states such as California and New York to endanger children — and now by judges to block state efforts at protecting youngsters.”
Many of the Endocrine Society’s members agree with the two authors, according to their experience at a recent meeting of the group. “We found that endocrinologists are aware of the society’s failings and rue its elevation of transgender activism over medical expertise and patient needs,” the pair wrote.
The group first endorsed injecting kids with hormones in 2017, despite “little good research on this issue, and … admitt[ing] the guidelines were largely based on evidence of ‘low’ or ‘very low’ quality.”
“At this year’s meeting, we had frank and fruitful discussions with endocrinologists who provide hormonal treatments to kids with gender dysphoria, as well as some who don’t,” they wrote. “Without exception, they acknowledged that the society’s evidence base for pediatric gender transition is weak, at best. Yet while they’re aware of the guidelines’ shortcomings, they’re afraid to voice their concerns.”
“The society’s full-throated endorsement of gender-affirming care implied condemnation of anyone who holds differing views,” the op-ed stated. “Medical professionals are being cowed into silence and coerced into providing treatments they know are dangerous to children.”
Because it is hard to challenge a finding of fact in a court, “endocrinologists are making themselves complicit in a scientifically baseless movement that inflicts serious harm on children’s physical and mental health.”
The initial op-ed drew further responses. Dr. Stephen Hammes, the president of the Endocrine Society, wrote that “[m]ore than 2,000 studies published since 1975 form a clear picture: Gender-affirming care improves the well-being of transgender and gender-diverse people and reduces the risk of suicide.” Undisclosed in the letter is that Hammes himself provides “transgender care.”
Do No Harm responded to Hammes’ claims that “more than 2,000 studies” supported his position.
“Yet many of these studies show negative results or non-results, while all suffer from methodological problems like selection bias or a lack of proper control groups,” the pair wrote in a July 10 response.
“These failings make it impossible to say whether drugs and surgeries were superior to less invasive alternatives like psychotherapy or even placebos. All but two dozen studies involved adults who transitioned as adults, not children, meaning more than 1,900 of the studies Dr. Hammes cites have no bearing on this issue. The layman may be impressed by the large number, but evidence-based medicine is concerned with the quality and reliability of research, not its quantity.”
The pair challenged Hammes to support a “systematic review of all risks and benefits of hormonal interventions.”
“Until then, states have no choice but to pass laws to protect children from well-intended but harmful practices,” they concluded.
Matt has previously worked at Students for Life of America, Students for Life Action and Turning Point USA. While in college, he wrote for The College Fix as well as his college newspaper, The Loyola Phoenix. He holds a B.A. from Loyola University-Chicago and an M.A. from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He lives in northwest Indiana with his family.