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Disorders of Sex Development (DSD) Resources

What are disorders of sex development?

Disorders of sex development include many different medical conditions. They could happen to anyone, and are actually more common than you might think. You may have heard DSD called terms such as "intersex" or "hermaphrodite" or "pseudohermaphroditism." However, a meeting of international experts reached consensus that the term "disorders of sex development" should replace those terms.

The Handbook for Parents (available from Accord Alliance and the Consortium on the Management of Disorders of Sex Development) does a good job of defining DSD [1].

Because there are so many stages of sex development in human life, there are a lot of opportunities for a person to develop along a path that is not the average one for a boy or a girl. When a less-common path of sex development is taken, the condition is often called a “disorder of sex development” or DSD. So DSD is a name given to a lot of different variations of sex development.

These conditions have specific names, and include:

Where can I find information about Disorders of Sex Development?

Where can I find support and more information?

Reference:

[1] Consortium on the Management of Disorders of Sex Development.  Handbook for Parents.  1st ed.  Rohnert Park, CA: Intersex Society of North America; 2006:4.  Available from: http://www.accordalliance.org/dsdguidelines/parents.pdf.  Accessed 30 January 2009.

Compiled by Kyla Boyse, RN.  Reviewed by David E. Sandberg, PhD. 
Updated November 2012

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