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Oxandrolone use in trans-masculine youth appears to increase adult height

Early use of oxandrolone may augment adult height in trans-masculine youth. As such, according to the researchers, “height discussions should be part of comprehensive gender-affirming hormone therapy counseling.”

Photo by Mercedes Mehling from Unsplash.com

Early use of oxandrolone and gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogs has been shown to increase adult height in patients at risk for short stature. However, its use in trans-masculine (TM) youth to augment height has not been explored. This is why Frances W. Grimstad, Michelle M. Knoll and Jill D. Jacobson conducted a study to identify the impact of oxandrolone on adult height in TM youth.

For this study – “Oxandrolone Use in Trans-Masculine Youth Appears to Increase Adult Height: Preliminary Evidence” – that appeared in LGBT Health, the researchers reviewed the charts of TM patients seen between 2013 and 2018. Hormone regimens, heights, mid-parental height, and bone ages were recorded. They then examined correlations between adult height and age at the initiation of treatment or with the age of referral (in untreated patients).

The researchers found that of TM patients, 154 had achieved adult height, including 34 who received oxandrolone, 42 who reached adult height before starting gender-affirming hormone therapy (GAHT), and 14 who received no treatment.

Adult height correlated inversely with age at hormone initiation in oxandrolone-treated patients only (p = 0.001). Each earlier year of treatment yielded a 2.3 cm increase in adult height. Those who started oxandrolone younger than the median age achieved an adult height of 169.6 ± 6.4 cm compared to 162.1 ± 6.0 cm in those starting later than the median age (p < 0.001), 164.6 ± 4.8 cm in those receiving no treatment (p = 0.02), and 163.9 ± 6.5 cm in those receiving all other regimens (p < 0.001).

This shows that “early use of oxandrolone may augment adult height in TM youth.” As such, according to the researchers, “height discussions should be part of comprehensive GAHT counseling.”

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