September 9, 2021

All Six of Sweden's Pediatric Clinics Meet to Discuss a Cautious Stance Toward Pediatric Gender Transitions

All but one clinic agree transitions should happen only in "exceptional cases" outside of clinical trials, as they await new official guidance due later this year

According to a recently published medical news article in Sweden, representatives of all of Sweden's six university clinics that treat children and young people with gender dysphoria participated in a meeting called by Sweden's National Board of Health and Welfare to discuss the approach to hormonal interventions for gender-dysphoric youth. This meeting followed an earlier announcement by the Karolinska's Astrid Lindgren Children's Hospital that it will no longer provide pediatric medical transition outside of strictly controlled clinical trials.

The article reported that all but one pediatric gender clinic in Sweden have changed their protocols and no longer initiate pediatric gender transitions, as they await the National Board of Health and Welfare's guidance expected to come out later this year. Until this guidance been released, the clinics agreed that hormonal interventions outside of clinical trials settings should only be initiated in exceptional cases. It is not clear whether or not the official guidance will be binding, or if the clinics will be free to pursue their individualized treatment protocols.

The clinics also agreed that children and adolescents who are evaluated, diagnosed or treated for gender dysphoria must be followed in a national gender dysphoria health registry, which has recently been expanded to include children and adolescents. However, according to the article, there was also broad recognition that merely tracking outcomes in the registry will not provide evidence of sufficient quality to guide clinical decision-making, and that there is a need to conduct controlled trials at national scale.

The list of Sweden's pediatric university gender clinics that participated in the meeting is below: 

Astrid Lindgrens barnsjukhus (in Stockholm)
Akademiska barnsjukhuset (in Uppsala)
Skånes universitetssjukhus (in Skåne)
Drottning Silvias barnsjukhus (in Göteborg, Gothenburg)
H.K.H. Kronprinsessan Victorias barn- och ungdomssjukhus (in Linköping)
Norrlands universitetssjukhus (in Umeå)

The translated version of the article is available here.