A psychological profile of the transsexual: I. the male

Leonard R. Derogatis, Jon K. Meyer, Noelia Vazquez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


The present research introduced standardized psychological measurement into the clinical assessment of the male transsexual. Thirty-one males with a presenting complaint of gender dysphoria were carefully screened as to their correspondence with current nosological conceptions of transsexualism, and administered the Derogatis Sexual Functioning Inventory (DSFI) as part of their clinical psychometric work-up. The DSFI is an omnibus self-report scale providing measurement in the primary domains of sexual information, sexual experiences, sexual drive, sexual attitudes, psychological symptoms, affects, gender role definition, and sexual fantasy. Transsexual profiles were contrasted with those of a comparison group of 57 normal heterosexual males. Results of the comparisons revealed the transsexuals to show a significant decrement in accurate sexual information, and a marked reduction in the variety of sexual experiences they have been involved in. They also revealed a reduction in drive levels; however, this was qualified by which indicator of drive was used. Significant elevations in psychological symptoms and dysphoric affect were also noted, particularly of a depressive nature. Gender role definitions were markedly polarized in the feminine direction for male transsexuals, and their fantasy endorsements revealed some of the classic transsexual themes. The ability to develop this quantified and standardized psychological profile is viewed as an important step in accurately assessing the nature of these complex individuals, and developing a more accurate understanding of their condition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)234-254
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Nervous and Mental Disease
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1978
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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