Clinicians can judge whether under-16s can give informed consent to take puberty blockers, the Court of Appeal has ruled.
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The ruling followed an appeal brought by the Tavistock Trust, which runs the UK's only youth gender identity clinic.
What are puberty blockers?
Puberty blockers are drugs used to "pause" puberty by suppressing the release of hormones.
The hormones act as messengers telling the body to develop things such as breasts, periods, facial hair or a deeper voice.
Puberty blockers are prescribed to some children who are experiencing gender dysphoria, to temporarily stop their bodies developing.
Why are they used?
The Tavistock's Gender Identity Development Service (Gids) says pausing puberty can give a young person more time to consider their options, without the additional distress of unwanted changes in their body.
By pausing the development of breasts, for example, someone who goes on to have cross-sex hormone therapy may be able to avoid having them removed later on.
This hormone therapy involves taking testosterone, a masculinising hormone, or oestrogen, a feminising hormone. It is a treatment only available to over-16s on the NHS in England.