American law firm launches investigation into puberty blockers

Written by a mental health attorney

Girard Sharp, a national law firm focusing on class action litigation in the realms of unfair and deceptive trade practices, financial fraud, and consumer protection, has commenced an investigation into the use of gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogues (“puberty blockers”) in children. As stated on the firm’s website, the investigation seeks to determine the “adverse effects of puberty blocking medication on transgender minors who have taken the drugs.”

To that end, Girard Sharp has set up an online contact form soliciting information from parents and legal guardians of minors who may have been adversely affected by such brand medications as Lupron, Supprelin, Zoladex, Zytiga, and Eligard.

According to the firm, “Emerging research has raised potential red flags regarding the safety and efficacy of puberty blockers… [S]ome of the potential health consequences presented by puberty blockers may include low bone density and adverse psychological effects.”

The widespread use of puberty blockers in gender dysphoric children is a relatively new development in transgender healthcare. Research on the safety and efficacy of puberty blockers in this cohort of children remains scarce and low quality. Recent studies have indicated that the medications do not appear to relieve dysphoria as previously indicated, despite causing significant and lifelong side effects such as bone density loss and stunted growth.

Recently, the Attorney General of Texas opened an inquiry into the manufacturers of Supprelin LA (Endo Pharmaceuticals, Inc.) and Lupron Depot (AbbieVie, Inc.), two of the most commonly-administered puberty blockers in the United States. The investigation alleges that the pharmaceutical companies potentially violated state laws against deceptive and unfair business practices by marketing puberty blockers for off-label uses in gender dysphoric children.

Currently, puberty blockers are only approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use in precocious puberty (abnormally early pubertal onset), endometriosis, uterine fibroids, and certain types of cancer. The FDA has not approved puberty blockers for the use in gender dysphoric children.

Image credit: Sora Shimazaki, Pexels

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