Anatomical variations and differences in sexual development

Not everyone is born with the same set of gear, which can present a unique set of challenges for the owner of the ‘other’. Here we delve into some of the most common – and rare – congenital anatomical abnormalities and differences in sexual development found in babies, and discovered later in teenagers and adults.

We don’t talk much about those differences that do not, in some way, include a vagina or parts of a vagina or female phenotypes.

Generally differences in sexual development and anatomical abnormalities are treated purely in the medical system with surgeries, hormones and drugs, with psychological support a large part of successful outcomes. Natural medical treatments can play a supportive role.

There is a lot that can be done to maximise the results of the body you or someone you love ends up with.

Vaginal adenosis

Vaginal adenosis is where cervical and endometrial cells are found in the vaginal walls, and… Read it!

In utero exposure to DES

DES is a synthetic oestrogen given to millions of women during the 50s and 60s,… Read it!

Precocious puberty

Precocious puberty is the early onset of pubic hair, breasts, vulvar changes, and height in… Read it!

46,XX testicular difference of sexual development (DSD)

Folks with the 46,XX testicular difference of sexual development (DSD) are genetically female, but look… Read it!

46,XX ovotesticular difference of sexual development (DSD)

The 46,XX ovotesticular genetic make-up means both ovarian and testicular tissue is present.

Turner syndrome

Turner syndrome is what life looks like with a missing X chromosome, in women. Turner… Read it!

Obstructed uterine horn

An obstructed uterine horn is an anatomical abnormality whereby the uterus is not connected properly… Read it!

Kallmann syndrome

Kallmann syndrome is a genetic disorder characterised by lessened or no sense of smell and… Read it!

Persistent mullerian duct syndrome (PMDS)

PMDS is a disorder of sexual development that only affects males, but results in a… Read it!

Understanding adrenal PCOS

Sometime the excess androgens involved in PCOS are produced by the adrenal glands, not the… Read it!

Cervical hypoplasia

Cervical hypoplasia is an anatomical abnormality that results in a malformed cervix, which can prevent… Read it!

Uterine hypoplasia

Uterine hypoplasia is the undeformed or absent uterus, an anatomical abnormality often found in conjunction… Read it!

Cockscomb cervix anatomical abnormality

A cockscomb cervix is an anatomical abnormality whereby the cervix appears with large ridges or… Read it!

Uterus didelphys

A double uterus usually also means a double cervix and a double vagina - but… Read it!

Unicornuate uterus (hemi uterus) – müllerian duct anomalies

A unicornuate uterus is an anatomical abnormality that occurs when the two sides of the… Read it!

Reifenstein syndrome

Reifenstein syndrome is an androgen insensitivity syndrome occurring in foetal development that results in improper… Read it!

Vaginal agenesis – absent vagina

Vaginal agenesis is the complete absence of a vaginal canal, caused by an interruption to… Read it!

Cervical agenesis

Cervical agenesis means the cervix - connecting the uterus and vagina - is absent, usually… Read it!

Cervical stenosis

Cervical stenosis is the narrowing - for whatever reason - of the cervix, the neck… Read it!

Swyer syndrome (XY gonadal dysgenesis, XY female)

Swyer syndrome means you are a chromosomal male (46, XY), but - aside from ovaries… Read it!

MRKH syndrome

MRKH syndrome is a congenital abnormality, whereby the uterus, top part of the vagina, and… Read it!

Differences of Sexual Development (DSD)

DSD is the multitude of in-between typical male and female presentation we see in human… Read it!

5-alpha-reductase deficiency (5 ARD)

5 ARD is a genetic blip that blocks the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT)… Read it!

Complete, mild, or partial androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS, MAIS, PAIS)

Androgen insensitivity syndromes mean babies born as genetic males have an androgen receptor problem that… Read it!

Variations in genitalia

Variations in genitalia can be seen on a new baby that don't match either a… Read it!