Gender dysphoria in Asperger’s syndrome — PubMed
The incidence of Asperger’s syndrome is reported as above average in young people presenting with gender dysphoria. Patients with Asperger’s syndrome, however, are prone to obsessive preoccupations. This paper points out that the apparent dysphoria may in some cases prove to be a transient obsession.
I have not encountered this particular correlation before, though a quick search of the Interwebs confirms that it’s a known observation. I’m not sure how much this article adds to the science of things, though, as it’s just a case review of two patients from the author’s own practice. But I can’t fault the conclusion:
Patients asking for sex reassignment should be assessed for indications of Asperger’s syndrome. Irreversible treatments should be withheld until it is clear there is a genuine issue of transsexualism.
I think this is a wide precaution to take if the Asperger’s diagnosis is there. Heck, when I went to my gender therapist with signs of depression, she told me she wanted me on a six month course of antidepressants before she’d consider HRT, just to make sure it wasn’t a depression thing. [It isn’t.]
Short version: A good gender therapist will take the time to get the diagnosis right.