Trans-friendly gynecologist in Albuquerque, NM?
July 20, 2021 3:58 PM   Subscribe

Need a good, trans-friendly doctor for a teenager.

A close family member, S, came out as trans recently. He has severe gender dysphoria around having his period and could use the help of a good, trans-friendly doctor. S is a teenager, and I'm a newbie about options for trans people. I know that S should be eligible for birth control pills where he can avoid having a period or a few months at a time, and that he will need a good gynecologist to explore options. Please help us find a way to help him.
posted by terrierhead to Health & Fitness (11 answers total)
 
I don't have any doctors in Albuquerque, but I might start at Planned Parenthood for good, trans-affirming care. With hormonal manipulation (probably using "birth control"), S should be able to avoid having any periods.

Best to your loved one.
posted by i_am_a_fiesta at 4:05 PM on July 20 [1 favorite]


Some hormonal IUDs also prevent periods. S should consider asking at this option at the dr.
posted by ice-cream forever at 4:08 PM on July 20 [1 favorite]


He is possibly also eligible for Mirena. It is hormonal but low-dose progesterone (not estrogen), and doesn’t rely on taking a daily pill. For many people with uteruses it eliminates periods. Getting it inserted is unpleasant for anyone with a uterus though, and possibly more so for someone dealing with dysphoria. But it is only once for five years.

https://tgrcnm.org/# looks like a good local resource; see their provider directory if you don’t get sufficient refs here.
posted by nat at 4:10 PM on July 20 [2 favorites]


I will add that depending on his age, puberty blockers could be a prime consideration. This delays puberty and can help mitigate future gender dysphoria (delaying things like breasts growing, vocal changes and others). This is also different than HRT (hormone replacement therapy).

This guide does not provide information on New Mexico, but could still be useful information. https://southernequality.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/CSETransIntheSouth2019.pdf

I don’t know this group but they are likely good place to start to find resources by you https://tgrcnm.org/
posted by raccoon409 at 4:16 PM on July 20 [2 favorites]


Best answer: If you are okay with family practice, the Truman Clinic at UNM is fantastic. They provide comprehensive medical and social support services for transgender and gender non conforming patients. Dr. McClain in particular is a great person as well as a great doctor. MeMail me if you want more info.
posted by Missense Mutation at 4:33 PM on July 20 [2 favorites]


Best answer: He doesn't actually need to see a gynecologist (unless there's a specific concern that requires it), much like most people don't need a gynecologist to do a pap smear. He needs to see whoever sees trans youth locally. Whoever that is will be more likely to have the relevant knowledge than a gynecologist, never mind the cultural competence.* Prioritize looking for recommendations from transmasculine people (there are providers about whom I've heard rave reviews and then realise I've never heard a transmasculine person recommend them and while it might be coincidence, it likely isn't). He should be able to get what he needs without a gynecological exam, particularly if he is not sexually active in that area. (Transmasculine people often place really high priority on avoiding such exams.)

There are various contraception-based options for stopping menstruation. Skipping the placebo week on whatever contraception is an option. I know people who have used Depo-Provera as a stop-gap option (you can't use it forever for bone density reasons), but it's been long enough that I don't know the full range of options out there. Additionally, if he is looking to start testosterone in the near-ish term and needs contraception, picking something that is compatible with testosterone is a good plan (mostly I hear about IUDs and the implant).

Planned Parenthood is a good place to check, but it depends on the region whether they see trans people. I am also not sure about whether they generally see youth.

*They may, of course, be a gynecologist, but they're usually not--I used to live somewhere where one of the doctors that saw a huge portion of local trans people was a gynecologist, but they're usually either family medicine/internists or endocrinologists.
posted by hoyland at 4:43 PM on July 20 [3 favorites]


(Not all Planned Parenthood locations offer trans-specific care. It looks from this list like the Abuquerque location does not. The nearest Planned Parenthood to you that offers "LGBTQ services" is in El Paso. If you can find a local family doctor or a local clinic with experience with trans medicine, that would probably be a better bet.)
posted by nebulawindphone at 4:46 PM on July 20 [2 favorites]


Reach out to the Transgender Resource Center of NM (https://tgrcnm.org/). They will likely be able to send you in the right direction and could be a good resource for other information as well.
posted by BooneTheCowboyToy at 6:43 PM on July 20 [1 favorite]


Best answer: These days, you shouldn't need an OBGYN for something as simple as a teen getting on birth control. And in this case, I would really recommend against it, unless there is a specific medical concern. OBGYN visits are hyper-gendered experiences most of the time, and the appointment is likely to be dysphoria-inducing, even if you find that rare OBGYN who's genuinely trans competent.

If speed is the primary concern, just take him to a trans-accepting physician. Ideally, though, he should get in with a gender clinic or doctor. He should do this even if the birth control gets sorted out with a normal doctor, but in any case, a gender doctor (often a family physician and/or endocrinologist) will be more than competent for this. They will be familiar with managing menstrual suppression in teens, and have insight into the efficacy (and perhaps the dysphoria-related pros and cons) of various meds/devices. To find gender care in Albuquerque, I'd get in touch with the UNM system. While I don't think they have a specialized clinic, I'm sure their gender doctors can easily refer to other UNM specialists, which will make it easier for your relative to access various facets of gender care (including psych care, which almost all trans kids need).

Also, this is speculative, but it seems like you might not be talking about your own kid. Do his parents have issues with his gender? If so, I'm afraid they can stop him from accessing blockers/hormones/surgery until he is eighteen. But even if they're determined to stop him from medically transitioning right now, you should still try to get him a gender doctor, and a gender-competent therapist*. (*Assuming this won't set off unmanageable drama with his parents, if he has to use their insurance...since AFAIK, insurance companies won't censor EOB info for under-18s.) That way, if he's interested in medical transition, he can make plans now, and just work on keeping emotionally stable as he waits. Then he can get on hormones and surgery waitlists pretty much as soon as he turns eighteen.

If this is your child, it sounds like you're doing a great job of supporting him (thank you!!!). But just remember: it's so hard for trans kids to bring up stuff like medical transition and gender doctors with their parents, even if they're pretty sure you won't freak out. (And frankly, I don't think any trans kids are ever "pretty sure" of that, since it's just SUCH a frequent reaction, even from parents who believe they're trans accepting.) It's common to hide medical plans because of this, so please don't assume he only wants/needs to see an OBGYN or regular doctor right now. You should take the initiative, and show you're okay with medical transition by finding a gender doctor, and offering to take him to a consult.

Poking around, it looks like there's a Molly McClain who administers trans care in the UNM family medicine clinic. I'd start there. But there's a directory of other trans care providers under "Resources" at this site. Through that portal, you can also search for other specialists who say they're trans-friendly (including OBGYNs, if that's what you're sure he needs).

Thank you for caring about this young person <3
posted by desert outpost at 7:52 PM on July 20 [3 favorites]


Best answer: Have you already talked to the Transgender Resource Center of New Mexico? This seems like a great question to ask them. There is also a provider directory.

I have a friend who is very happy with the Truman Center at UNMH, and has found that the Truman Center is a good "one-stop" place for a number of resources.
posted by yohko at 11:01 PM on July 20 [1 favorite]


Response by poster: Thank all of you for your help! I will pass information about Dr. McClain and about the information you shared. I should have marked all of you as best answer.
posted by terrierhead at 12:28 AM on July 21 [1 favorite]


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