Microscopic Features of Vaginectomy Specimens from Transgender Patients

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: We aimed to better understand the histologic changes in vaginectomy specimens in transgender and gender-diverse (TGD) individuals after prolonged androgen administration. Methods: After obtaining institutional review board approval, we reviewed clinical records for all TGD individuals who underwent vaginal tissue resection at our institution between January 2002 and July 2020. Results: Ten transgender males who underwent vaginectomy for gender affirmation were identified. All patients had been assigned female gender at birth, and the median age at surgery was 41 years (range, 22-74 years). All 10 patients had received androgen for 2 to 10 years preoperatively. The corresponding pathology specimens were examined grossly and microscopically, including with immunohistochemical stains for NKX3.1, prostate-specific antigen (PSA), p501s, and androgen receptor (AR). No gross lesions were identified. Microscopically, prostate-like glands (8/10), urothelial metaplasia (4/10), and vaginal atrophy (8/10) were identified. Seven cases with prostate-like glands showed positive staining with PSA, NKX3.1, p501s, and AR in both squamous and glandular components. Conclusions: Recognition of these androgen-related changes enables pathologist to avoid the overdiagnosis of dysplasia. Long-Term follow-up is needed to thoroughly understand any potential future implications of these androgen-related changes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)639-645
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of clinical pathology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s).


  • Androgen administration
  • Gender dysphoria
  • Prostatic metaplasia
  • Surgical confirmation
  • Transgender and gender-diverse (TGD) individuals
  • Transgender pathology
  • Urothelial metaplasia
  • vaginectomy

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Review
  • Journal Article


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