This blog is part of our partnership with Pleasant Street Apothecary, the pharmacy of our parent organization, AIDS Care. It was written by Kobi Nathan, PharmD Candidate c/o 2012 who recently worked in the pharmacy as part of his PharmD candidacy process.
1. All MtF transgender patients can take any type of estrogen without risk to self.
False. Patients over 40 years old, who smoke, or have risk factors for getting blood clots (obesity or have a sedentary lifestyle) should not take the tablet form of estrogen! The patch formulations are safer. The reason has to do with the way the oral estrogen is broken down within the body which could increase the risk for patients getting blood clots.
2. Estrogen products and spironolactone bought from the internet are just as safe and potent as the ones prescribed by the doctor.
False . We do not know where these drugs were made, or by whom! You should only take these medications when prescribed by your doctor because there are labs that must be monitored during your transition to decrease your risk of unwanted adverse events.
3. “Silicone parties” or “pumping parties” are legal in the US and are safe just like silicone breast implants.
Absolutely not!!! They are illegal. They are also very dangerous to your health. Silicone injected directly into the buttocks, breasts, or other body parts may move to the lungs and cause you to drown in the chemical or your own mucus. There are also cases where patients have been disfigured for life by the silicone.
4. MtF patients who are being prescribed hormones by a provider should supplement their therapy with illicit hormones to speed up the transitioning process.
False. The only person who should be making decisions about increasing or decreasing your medication doses is your doctor. Spironolactone can cause your blood pressure to drop to unsafe levels if you increase your dose too quickly. You could lose your balance, fall, and seriously hurt yourself. In addition, increasing your estrogen dose will also put you at risk for developing blood clots, especially if you smoke or have risk factors.
5. Once on hormones, preventive health of the patient’s birth organs is unnecessary.
False. If you got it, check it!! Hormone therapy does not get rid of patient’s birth organs. These must be followed up along with all the follow-up needed with hormone therapy.
Disclaimer: If you have an urgent matter to discuss, this is not the forum to express it. Your provider or the pharmacy that dispenses these medications should handle urgent medical questions.
About Pleasant Street Apothecary:
A C Center, Inc. dba Pleasant Street Apothecary is conveniently located in downtown Rochester and features an open and welcoming environment with a cozy waiting area. Experienced pharmacists and technicians can assist with the management of complex medication regimens and third-party prescription plans including: Medicare, Medicaid with spend-downs and ADAP. The organization strives to employ both LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) and LGBT-friendly staff; and all employees participate in LGBT Core Competence training. Additionally, Pleasant Street Apothecary offers a wide range of HIV pharmaceuticals, a complete selection of non-HIV medications, high tech services, online ordering, and reliable, free delivery. This friendly, neighborhood pharmacy is also open six days a week.
For more information, please visit: www.PleasantStreetRX.com.