Birbhum, Kolkata: A 30-year-old woman learns she is a man after getting tested at Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Cancer Hospital. She visited the hospital after observing severe abdominal pain a couple of months ago.
She got married nine years ago and had been living a normal life without any complications, albeit the pain in her lower abdominal area turned her life upside down. While treating her for severe pain, clinical oncologist Dr Anupam Dutta and surgical oncologist Dr Soumen Das conducted her medical tests and discovered she is a male suffering from testicular cancer (cancer found in the male organs).
She has diagnosed with ‘Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome’ – a rare condition in which a child is born with male genitals but has physical appearance or traits of a woman. Mutations in the AR genes cause this syndrome due to which X chromosome resists androgen (a hormone that produces a male appearance).
Dr Dutta explained the exceptionality of the condition while mentioning the traits of the syndrome. “From her appearance, she is a woman. Starting from her voice, developed breasts, normal external genitalia, everything is that of a woman. However, uterus and ovaries have been absent since birth. She has also never experienced menstruation,” Dr Dutta told PTI. He further explained that this syndrome can be found in one out of 22,000 people, Indian Express reported.
Doctors decided to conduct a Karyotyping test after reports found that the person is carrying a “blind vagina”. The test later found XY chromosomes (normally found in the male body) instead of XX chromosomes (found in the female body).
“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 got diagnosed with testicular cancer, also called seminoma, he said.
After the revelation, her 28-year-old sister underwent required tests following the revelation, who also got diagnosed with Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome. Not only this, the oncologist said that patient’s two maternal aunts were also diagnosed with the same syndrome in the past.
She is currently undergoing chemotherapy. When asked about the reaction to her ‘true identity’, the doctor said “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.” The couple had tried for a baby quite several times.