Gender Affirming Surgery|Articles in Press

Disparities in Prostate Cancer Screening for Transgender Women: An Analysis of the MarketScan Database


      To describe the prevalence of PSA screening amongst transgender women. A transgender individual is someone whose gender identity differs from their birth sex or the societal norms of that assigned sex. There are no formal guidelines regarding PSA screening in transgender women, even though they retain prostatic tissue throughout the gender-affirming process, and there is a lack of existing data to adequately inform clinical practice.


      We identified a cohort of transgender women in the IBM MarketScan dataset using ICD codes. The patient’s eligibility for inclusion was determined on an annual basis for the years 2013-2019. For each year, we required continuous enrollment, 3 months of post-transgender diagnosis follow-up, and aged 40-80 without a prior diagnosis of prostate malignancy. This cohort was compared to cisgender men with similar eligibility criteria. The proportions of individuals undergoing PSA screening were compared using log-binomial regression.


      A group of 2957 transgender women met the inclusion criteria. We saw significantly lower PSA screening rates among transgender individuals for ages 40-54 and 55-69, but higher rates within the age group 70-80 (P < .001 for all).


      This is the first study evaluating PSA screening rates for insured transgender women. While the rates for screening in transgender women over the age of 70 are higher, the overall rate of screening for all other age groups lags below the general population in this dataset. Further investigation is necessary to provide equitable care for the transgender community.
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