F1000 Commentary: Treatment of adults with complications from previous hypospadias surgery / What should clinicians and parents know about informed consent for DSD care?

Medical ethics requires that, before making decisions about or agreeing to health care choices, patients and parents of minor patients be fully informed. In the case of DSD care, this includes (but is not limited to) decisions to intervene with surgery and hormones. For decision-makers to be fully informed, they must be told what clinicians know about the necessity, benefits, risks, and costs (including physical costs to the patient’s body) of various options. Clinicians need to be honest about on what evidentiary basis they are offering choices and making recommendations. This includes explaining to families when the evidence is strong or weak for particular interventions, and explaining to families the option to decline an intervention.

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