Objective: Gender dysphoric patients of transsexual type (TS) have been considered to have severe psychopathology. However, these notions have a weak empirical documentation.
Method: TS patients (n = 86), patients with personality disorder (PD, n = 98) and adult healthy controls (HC, n = 1068) were compared by means of the Symptom Checklist 90 (SCL-90). All patients were diagnosed by structured interviews (Axis I, II and V of DSM-III-R/IV). PD patients were further characterized according to the LEAD-standard.
Results: TS patients scored significantly lower than PD patients on the Global Symptom Index and all SCL-90 subscales. Although the TS group generally scored slightly higher than the HC group, all scores were within the normal range.
Conclusion: TS patients selected for sex reassignment showed a relatively low level of self-rated psychopathology before and after treatment. This finding casts doubt on the view that transsexualism is a severe mental disorder.