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Future research directions following study of UTI rates in transgender women post-vaginoplasty

Opinion
Video

"We did discuss a couple of future research ideas, a number of which would have been controlling for those potential factors we thought could contribute to the increased UTI risk that we were not able to control for in the study like loss of commensal bacteria or anything of that nature," says David Gilbert.

In this video, David Gilbert discusses potential future research directions following the recent Urology paper, “Rates of UTI in Transgender Women Post-Vaginoplasty versus Cisgender Women: A Retrospective Cohort Study in a Large US Health Network.” Gilbert is an MD candidate at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, Ohio.

Transcription:

Does your paper address any potential future research directions; for example, investigating preventive measures to reduce UTI risk in transgender women post surgery?

We did discuss a couple of future research ideas, a number of which would have been controlling for those potential factors we thought could contribute to the increased UTI risk that we were not able to control for in the study like loss of commensal bacteria or anything of that nature. Something that would be possibly preventative is one of the theories we had for the increased UTI risk was introduction of non native bacteria through the use of dilators or douching, which are required for maintenance of the neovagina. So there could be something done on the provider end to ensure sterility of those tools.

Did your study look at any other potential outcomes besides UTIs following vaginoplasty in transgender women compared with cisgender women?

Our study did not; it was a lot of data to get through, so we tried to keep it where it was. But our lab as a whole has been exploring other outcomes post vaginoplasty. We have a paper that I think is still being written but was just presented at a few conferences exploring STI rates in trans women vs cis women post vaginoplasty, which can be pretty interesting because some of them have a predilection for vaginal epithelium. And so having a different tissue in the neovagina could influence those rates pretty interestingly.

This transcription was edited for clarity.

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