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May 19, 1978

Transsexual Surgery: A New Tort?

Author Affiliations

From the law offices of Belli & Choulos, San Francisco.

JAMA. 1978;239(20):2143-2148. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03280470055022

Transsexual surgery became a modern reality 25 years ago when Christine Jorgenson's sex reversal shocked the world. Since that time, transsexuality has become both dilemma and controversy in medicine, psychiatry, and law. Transsexuality emerged into an interdisciplinary void. Today both scientists and courts are being asked to fill that void with answers. I have explored the legal aspects of transsexual surgery, both ancient common-law precedents and current developments, and possible answers to the sex change dilemma.

(JAMA 239:2143-2148, 1978)