Transgender and non-binary Australians’ experiences with healthcare professionals in relation to fertility preservation

Clare Bartholomaeus, Damien W. Riggs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


While transitioning gender historically precluded many transgender people from conceiving (more) children, there is now the option to undertake fertility preservation. However, the uptake of this option to date has been low. In order to extend existing limited research on the topic, this paper draws on responses to a questionnaire survey provided by 409 transgender and non-binary adults in Australia, which explored their experiences related to fertility preservation. The paper specifically focuses on the experiences of 295 participants who responded to open-ended questions about their experiences with, and views of, healthcare professionals in regard to fertility preservation. A thematic analysis indicated that healthcare professionals undertake a range of roles with regard to fertility preservation, some viewed positively (e.g. as providers of information), and some viewed negatively (e.g. as potential gatekeepers). The paper concludes by arguing that professionals need to ensure that transgender and non-binary people are provided with enough information, support and opportunity to make an informed decision about fertility preservation. The discussion includes a consideration of interweaving factors, particularly costs, and recommendations for further research that may inform clinical guidelines and training.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-145
Number of pages17
JournalCulture, Health and Sexuality
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • assisted reproduction
  • fertility preservation
  • healthcare professionals
  • non-binary gender
  • transgender


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