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Hematocrit Within Normal Range With Testosterone Gender-Affirming Therapy

Mean hematocrit ranged from 41.84 to 45.68 percent for those receiving testosterone as gender-affirming hormone therapy

By Elana Gotkine HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Nov. 27, 2023 (HealthDay News) — For people using testosterone as gender-affirming hormone therapy (GAHT), mean hematocrit varies from 41.84 to 45.68 percent, which is within the normal range, according to a study published online Nov. 27 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Nithya Krishnamurthy, from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, and colleagues examined the effect of using exogenous testosterone as GAHT on hematocrit in 6,670 patients who were prescribed testosterone through Plume.

Of the patients, 8.4, 2.7, and 0.9 percent had a hematocrit ≥50 percent, ≥52 percent, and ≥54 percent, respectively. The researchers found that hematocrit varied significantly between different clinically relevant testosterone thresholds (T <50 versus 50 to 299 versus 300 to 999 versus ≥1,000 ng/dL) and on comparison of serum testosterone in increments of 50 ng/dL within the target range for males (300 to 1,000 ng/dL). The range of mean hematocrit was from 41.84 percent (T <50 ng/dL) to 45.68 percent (T 900 to 949 ng/dL). Higher mean hematocrit was seen for patients on intramuscular testosterone versus transdermal testosterone (44.96 versus 43.41 percent). When controlling for each other, both route of administration and testosterone level had significant associations with hematocrit.

“It’s noteworthy that in the largest North American cohort reported to date, less than 1 percent of transmasculine individuals had a hematocrit level where medical interventions might be required,” Krishnamurthy said in a statement. “These results should help providers feel more comfortable prescribing testosterone as part of GAHT.”

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