Research shows that LGBTQ+ people tend to delay regular health screenings, and therefore, get later stage cancer cancer diagnoses that often lead to worse outcomes. This is in large part due to past negative experiences with health care providers.
Annie Brown, MD, assistant professor of radiology at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and a UC Health radiologist, discusses new guidelines from the American College of Radiology that are being finalized on breast cancer screening for transgender patients.
“One of the reasons I became interested in this special population is that we were seeing more transgender patients in our clinics [during training in Boston], and we were not informed or comfortable as a group to know their specifc needs, how to address them, and that lack of understanding and knowledge made us uncomfortable which, in turn, couldn’t have made our patients feel very comfortable. So I worked with another passionate physician to advocate, and our efforts grew from there.
“It’s hard to image what it’s like to be a gender minority in our country unless its part of your lived experience; most people don’t have to hide who they love. Most people are happy with [their gender] and don’t have to wake up each day questioning whether they are male or female. [This population has] experienced a lot of discrimination and abuse over the years.”