Schizophrenia and gender dysphoria: Is it only a question of thalamus?

Bernadette Ibrahim(1), Vinciane Corman(1) Published in the journal : June 2018 Category : Endocrinology

Summary :

Schizophrenia is a mental disease characterized by a personality dislocation. Gender dysphoria refers to the intimate, constant, and irreversible conviction of belonging to the opposite sex versus the origi-nal one.

For these two diseases, studies have reported a thalamic damage in two neighboring areas. We may wonder if these two areas of joint damage could be linked and thus explain this sexual identity disor-der in schizophrenic patients, thereby guiding us towards appropriate medical management.

In this article, we illustrate the medical care of schizophrenic patients affected by gender dysphoria by considering the representative case of a schizophrenic male patient who is searching for his sexual identity with the feeling of an “atrophic clitoris”, along with an increase in adrenal androgens in labor-atory tests.

The medical care for these patients proves complex, as it requires us to come up with the right questions.

What is already known about the topic?

Though the topic is barely described in the scientific literature, the requests upon consultation prove more common than expected. Due to the closeness of the thalamic nuclei that are affected in these two diseases, the question of a possible causality link arises and merits further attention.

What does this article bring up for us?

This article provides us with a tool designed for the medical care schizophrenic patients who suffer from a sexual identity disorder.

Key words 

Schizophrenia, gender dysphoria, thalamus, adrenal enzymatic bock