Kolkata woman finds out she is a man after 30 years of leading a normal life

ST Staff
Saturday, 27 June 2020

Doctors have identified this unnatural occurrence as a condition known as ‘Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome,’ a complexity in which a person is born genetically male but has all-female traits and identifies as a woman.

A woman in Kolkata after leading a normal life for 30 years on Friday discovered that she is a man. She had no complications in the past, until recently while undergoing treatment for abdominal pain got to know that she had testicular cancer. Doctors have identified this unnatural occurrence as a condition known as ‘Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome,’ a complexity in which a person is born genetically male but has all-female traits and identifies as a woman. Oddly enough, after this revelation, her 28-year-old sister, who underwent the same test, was diagnosed with the same condition.

The resident from Birbhum came to Kolkata’s Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Cancer Hospital after having ongoing pain in the lower abdomen for months. The real identity of this “woman” who has been married for the past nine years came out after oncologist Dr Anupam Dutta and surgical oncologist Dr Soumen Das conducted necessary medical tests on her.

As reported by PTI, Dr Dutta said that this condition is extremely rare and only one out of every 22,000 people have it. “From her appearance, she is a woman. Starting from her voice, developed breasts, normal external genitalia, everything is that of a woman. However, the uterus and ovaries have been absent since birth. She has also never experienced menstruation,” he added.

The Karyotyping test has suggested that her chromosome complement was ‘XY’ unlike any other woman who has ‘XX’ complement. Other tests have said that she has a “blind vagina.” She is undergoing chemotherapy treatment and is in a stable condition currently. “As her testicles remained undeveloped inside the body, there was no secretion of testosterone. Her female hormones, on the other hand, gave her the appearance of a woman,” stated Dr Dutta.

He further explained, “We conducted clinical examinations, after she complained of abdominal pain, and found out she has testicles inside her body. A biopsy was conducted, following which she was diagnosed with testicular cancer, also called seminoma.”

Reports also revealed that the couple tried to conceive children several times but failed. The patient’s two maternal aunts were diagnosed with the same condition, the doctor further stated.

“It’s probably in the genes. We have come to know that two of her aunts from the maternal side were also suffering from a similar condition,” the doctor said before adding, “The person has grown up to be a woman. She is married to a man for almost a decade. Currently, we are counselling the patient and her husband, advising them to continue living life as they have been.”

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