THURSDAY, Nov. 17, 2022 (HealthDay News) — Children hospitalized with gender dysphoria-related diagnoses have increased prevalence of suicidality and self-harm, according to a study published in the December issue of The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health.

Hannah K. Mitchell, B.M.B.S., from the Evelina London Children’s Hospital, and colleagues identified transgender and nonbinary young people aged 6 to 20 years to examine the association with hospital admission for suicidality or self-harm. Data were included from 1,090,544 individuals from the Kids’ Inpatient Database (KID) 2016 and 1,026,752 from KID 2019.

The researchers found that gender dysphoria-related diagnoses were prevalent in 161 and 475 per 100,000 hospital admissions in KID 2016 and KID 2019, respectively. Proportionately more individuals who were White, privately insured, or from higher median income ZIP code areas had gender dysphoria-related codes in KID 2016 and KID 2019. The prevalence of suicidality was increased among individuals with versus without gender-dysphoria-related codes in KID 2016 and KID 2019 (unadjusted prevalence ratios, 7.19 and 5.45, respectively). In multivariable modeling adjusting for confounders, these associations persisted in KID 2016 and KID 2019 (adjusted prevalence ratios, 5.02 and 4.14, respectively). In both KID 2016 and KID 2019, increased unadjusted and adjusted prevalence ratios were also seen for individuals with versus without gender-dysphoria related codes for self-harm and when combining suicidality with self-harm.

“Structural and health care provider-level interventions are needed to reduce discrimination and improve access to gender-affirming care to prevent adverse outcomes,” the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to Pfizer.

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