I read the GP guidance and thought this process might be a positive thing, it talks of holistic treatment, of avoiding ‘gatekeepers’, of allowing the patient to find their own path and their own speed and order of doing things.
So…yesterday we went to see our GP, who probably wished by the end of the 40 minute session (and who probably had an entire afternoon of other pissed of patients as we made him run so late) that he had come to the session a little better prepared as my partner (and we as a pair) have come a long way since he spoke to him alone a couple of weeks ago.
When we asked him what the process was like his opening bid was that it could be a couple of years until ANYTHING could happen. Cue major distress from both of us and my insistance that that just couldn’t be the case.
(Having since read the NHS guidance on funding gender stuff…i can well believe in some cases it could be the case).
But we shall see.
The GP will contact the Primary Care Trust and see what their funding structure etc is on this. (note to self…. ring and ask for funding policy).
But one of the first steps , that of getting hold of Finasteride (for halting hair loss) was in instant gain….
…or should have been.
Finasteride comes in two forms…1mg and 5mg. The former is prescribed for male pattern baldness and the latter for fairly serious prostate things.
Only the latter comes free on the NHS.
Our instant reaction (backed up by reading about it on trans forums) was to take the free tablets and cut them up.
We asked the pharmacist how one cuts them up and she said ‘you don’t’ they are not made to be cut up…you’d have no telling how much drug you’d actually be getting day by day. The fact that the tablet is coated also means its ‘meant’ to hit a certain place in your sytem before the drug gets absorbed so again, cutting it up means this would probably be scuppered.
Maybe some of the people who find finasteride doesnt work are the same ones who are cutting it up….we’ll probably never know.
But this is so important a step in the process psychologically for my partner that its worth doing everything we can to have best chance of it working.
Therefore either we get clearance that taking 5mg daily is ok (its not like the blocking of testosterone is a big problem for him)! Or we go back and pays the money and takes the 1mg.
So…first step….positive if confusing outcome.
Bloods were also taken and support referal for me discussed.