Comparative Study
Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
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Feminizing hormone therapy in a Canadian cohort of transgender women with and without HIV.

BACKGROUND: Potential bidirectional drug-drug interactions between feminizing hormone therapy (FHT) and antiretroviral therapy (ART) are of concern for trans women with HIV and their healthcare providers. This study aimed to characterize patterns of FHT and ART among trans women with HIV and to compare serum hormone levels to trans women without HIV.

METHODS: Charts of trans women were reviewed at seven HIV primary care or endocrinology clinics in Toronto and Montreal from 2018 to 2019. ART regimens, FHT use, serum estradiol, and serum testosterone levels were compared on the basis of HIV status (positive, negative, missing/unknown).

RESULTS: Of 1495 trans women, there were 86 trans women with HIV, of whom 79 (91.8%) were on ART. ART regimens were most commonly integrase inhibitor-based (67.4%), many boosted with ritonavir or cobicistat (45.3%). Fewer (71.8%) trans women with HIV were prescribed FHT, compared to those without HIV (88.4%) and those with missing/unknown status (90.2%, p < 0.001). Among trans women on FHT with recorded serum estradiol ( n = 1153), there was no statistical difference in serum estradiol between those with HIV (median: 203 pmol/L, IQR: 95.5, 417.5) and those with negative (200 mol/L [113, 407]) or missing/unknown HIV status (227 pmol/L [127.5, 384.5) ( p = 0.633). Serum testosterone concentrations were also similar between groups.

CONCLUSIONS: In this cohort, trans women with HIV were prescribed FHT less often than trans women with negative or unknown HIV status. There was no difference in serum estradiol or testosterone levels of trans women on FHT regardless of HIV status, providing reassurance regarding potential drug-drug interactions between FHT and ART.

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