Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

The Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth?

Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

The Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth?

Article excerpt

The Whole Truth and Nothing But the Truth? Ms. D, a sixteen-year-old female, appears in her physician's office concerned that she has not yet menstruated. A series of tests reveals that the girl has an XY genotype, a genetic abnormality called testicular feminization that occurs in approximately one in 50,000 females. Ms. D has precancerous tests that require surgical removal, and an operation on her vagina is necessary for her to engage in intercourse. However, she is and always will be infertile. Although cases of testicular feminization present some phenotypic variability, it is very likely that Ms. D will not exhibit additional genetically related abnormalities. Individuals with her condition are phenotypically female and exhibit heterosexual/homosexual patterns at the same rates as XX females.

Her physician, Dr. P, is concerned about what information to disclose to Ms. D. He believes that he should inform her about her precancerous condition, and that this condition along with her vagina will require surgery. …

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