Male to Female (MTF) Changes

Males transitioning to females (MTF) experience the following effects of estrogen:

  • Breast development (full development takes several years)
  • Loss of ejaculation
  • Loss of erection
  • Shrinkage of testicles
  • Sterility

Temporary changes, which are reversible after HT is stopped, include the following:

  • Decrease in acne
  • Decrease in facial and body hair
  • Decrease in muscle mass and strength
  • Skin becomes softer and smoother
  • Slowing of balding pattern
  • Redistribution of fat from abdominal area to hips and buttocks

Risks associated with HT include the following:

  • Benign pituitary tumors
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Liver disease
  • Migraine headache
  • Tendency for blood to clot, causing related conditions:
    • Aneurysm
    • Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)
    • Pulmonary embolism (can be fatal)
  • Weight gain
  • Worsening of depression (if present); increased sensitivity to stress

Publication Review By: Stanley J. Swierzewski, III, M.D.

Published: 31 Jul 2001

Last Modified: 08 Oct 2015