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Giulia Gava, Ilaria Mancini, Stefania Alvisi, Renato Seracchioli, and Maria Cristina Meriggiola


The impact of different combinations of long-term gender-affirming hormone therapy (GAHT) in transwomen (TW) is largely unknown. To assess the effects of 5-year administration of cyproterone acetate (CPA) or leuprolide acetate (Leu) plus transdermal or oral estradiol (E).


Cohort study based on prospectively collected data. Fifty TW received 50 mg CPA daily orally (n = 25; CPA+E group) or 3.75 mg Leu i.m. monthly (n = 25; Leu+E group) with 1 or 2 mg E daily for 5 years. Reproductive hormones, biochemical and anthropometric parameters, body composition and bone mineral density (BMD) were assessed.


LH, FSH and total testosterone levels were similarly and significantly suppressed in both groups. Prolactin increased only in the CPA+E group (P = 0.002). Fasting insulin resistance and glucose progressively increased in the CPA+E group only (treatment × time effect P = 0.002 and P = 0.043, respectively). Total cholesterol increased more in the Leu+E group than in the CPA+E group and HDL-cholesterol decreased in the CPA+E group (time × treatment interaction effect, P = 0.007). Lumbar and total body BMD increased in both groups after 3 years. No serious adverse events were recorded.


Both regimens were effective in suppression of T production. CPA+E worsened the metabolic profile with a slight increase in PRL levels. All subjects presented an increase in BMD regardless of treatment. These preliminary data could have clinical implications in the choice of GAHT, in particular for those TW not requiring gender-affirming surgery.

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Giulia Gava, Ilaria Mancini, Isabella Orsili, Silvano Bertelloni, Stefania Alvisi, Renato Seracchioli, and Maria Cristina Meriggiola


To assess bone health in adult women with complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS) and removed gonads compared with age-matched healthy controls. To evaluate the effects of transdermal oestradiol 2 mg or oral estradiol valerate 2 mg on bone, biochemical and clinical characteristics.


Cohort study.


Bone, body composition and anthropometric parameters were assessed in 32 adult CAIS and 32 healthy controls. In 28 cases, CAIS evaluations of metabolic, bone and body composition were performed also after a maximum of 6 years of therapy.


Lumbar, femoral and total body bone mineral density (BMD) were significantly lower in those with CAIS when compared with controls. The prevalence of vertebral osteoporosis and osteopenia was significantly higher in the CAIS group (P = 0.038, OR = 9.67, 95% CI: 1.13–82.83 and P = 0.012, OR= 3.85, 95% CI: 1.34–11.16, respectively). Prevalence of femoral osteopenia was significantly higher in the CAIS group (P = 0.0012, OR = 7.93, 95% CI: 2.26–27.9). During follow-up, lumbar BMD significantly increased suggesting a significant effect of treatment on BMD (P = 0.0016), while femoral and total body BMD did not show any significant change. Total body BMD values were positively associated to the duration and route of oestrogen administration and to serum estradiol levels. Transdermal administration of estrogens was associated with better total body BMD in comparison to oral administration.


Our results reinforce the importance of adequate hormonal treatment for women living with CAIS, suggesting a better effect from the transdermal route over the oral route.