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Wrong Diagnosis Claimed in Sex Change Case

Posted Mar 17 2009 3:09am

A 66-year old Australian man who underwent gender reassignment surgery and later resumed life as a man is suing the Gender Dysphoria Clinic at Melbourne' s Monash Medical Centre where he was treated between 1993 and 1995. The unnamed former patient maintains that he sought the surgery after being diagnosed with transsexualism by psychiatrists Trudy Kennedy and Chris Grant. The lawsuit further adds that the doctors were mistaken in believing that the patient met the clinical criteria for transsexualism, i.e., preoccupation with "female" activities, abhorrence for male genitalia, and long-term opposite-gender identification. The patient' s attorney also argued that the doctors failed to consider his childhood sexual abuse and a note made by another doctor who had argued against the operation.

Following the surgery, the patient became dissatisfied living as a woman and resumed dressing as a man after five years. He filed a complaint with the Victoria Ombudsman in 2004 and sought legal counsel in 2007. The lawsuit also names the treating psychologist, Patricia Miach for failing to make a correct diagnosis and the plastic surgeon, Graham Isaacs, who carried out the gender reassignment surgery.

Preliminary arguments over the lawsuit have been heard by Victoria' s Supreme Court and the case is set to resume.

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