Gender advocates also falsely contend that puberty blockers for children and teens have been “used safely since the late 1980s,” as a recent Scientific American article put it. That ignores substantial evidence of harmful long-term side effects.
The fashion for transgenderism has brought with it a new euphemism: “gender-affirming care,” which means surgical and pharmacological interventions designed to make the body look and feel more like that of the opposite sex. Gender-affirming care for children involves the use of “puberty blockers”: one of five powerful synthetic drugs that block the natural production of sex hormones.
The Food and Drug Administration has approved those medications to treat prostate cancer, endometriosis, certain types of infertility and a rare childhood disease caused by a genetic mutation. But it has never approved them for gender dysphoria, the clinical term for the belief that one’s body is the wrong sex.
Thus the drugs, led by AbbVie’s Lupron, are prescribed to minors “off label.” (They are also used off-label for chemical castration of repeat sex offenders.) Off-label dispensing is legal; some half of all prescriptions in the U.S. are for off-label uses. But off-label use circumvents the FDA’s authority to examine drug safety and efficacy, especially when…