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Sallie Baxendale vs. transgender people

Sallie Baxendale is a British psychologist and anti-transgender activist.


Sallie Ann Baxendale earned a bachelor’s degree from University of Surrey in 1990, followed by a master’s degree there in 1992. Baxendale earned a doctorate from UCL in 1997.

Much of Baxendale’s research involves epilepsy and brain development.

Anti-transgender activism

Baxendale began appearing in anti-trans media in 2021, starting with Transgender Trend.

Baxendale supports the ex-transgender movement and is critical of gender affirming healthcare for minors, especially use of puberty blockade. Baxendale was alarmed that some people describe puberty blockade as “fully reversible.”

Baxendale was an invited speaker at a 2023 anti-trans conference organized by the Society for Evidence-Based Gender Medicine (SEGM).

Since 2023 Baxendale has contributed to anti-trans publication UnHerd,

In 2024 Baxendale published a summary of the 2024 Acta Paediatrica literature review (described below) on anti-trans site Clinical Advisory Network on Sex and Gender (CAN-SG).

2024 puberty blockade literature review

In 2024 conservative Swedish psychiatrist Mikael Landén leaked a pre-publication paper by Baxendale to anti-trans activist Bernard Lane. Baxendale’s academic literature review reflected Landén’s view that puberty blockade should be strictly controlled because of unknown risks, particularly cognitive effects.

On the day of publication, Baxendale published a piece in UnHerd about how this puberty blockade literature review was rejected by three journals as well as accepted by Acta Paediatrica, which previously promoted more gatekeeping of healthcare for gender diverse youth in Sweden’s healthcare system. Baxendale claimed, “it wasn’t the methods they objected to, it was the actual findings.” Of the rejection reasons that Baxendale shared, all were about the obvious bias of the author and the stigmatizing potential from how the material is tendentiously presented.

The obvious and simple answer is to skip puberty blockers and go straight to hormones. Baxendale cites studies about young people who experience central precocious puberty having more robust brain development and cognition, so Baxendale has made a strong case for use of puberty-inducing drugs in all minors who desire improved cognition and IQ.


Baxendale, Sallie (February 19, 2024). Why did three journals reject my puberty-blocker study? Trans children deserve to know the facts. UnHerd

Baxendale, S. (2024). The impact of suppressing puberty on neuropsychological function: A review. Acta Paediatrica.

  • Gender diverse youth studies cited:
  • Staphorsius AS, Kreukels BPC, Cohen-Kettenis PT, Veltman DJ, Burke SM, Schagen SEE, Wouters FM, Delemarre-van de Waal HA, Bakker J (2015). Puberty suppression and executive functioning: An fMRI-study in adolescents with gender dysphoria. Psychoneuroendocrinology (Vol. 56, pp. 190–199). Elsevier BV.
  • Arnoldussen M, Hooijman EC, Kreukels BP, de Vries AL (2022). Association between pre-treatment IQ and educational achievement after gender-affirming treatment including puberty suppression in transgender adolescents. Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry (Vol. 27, Issue 4, pp. 1069–1076). SAGE Publications.
  • Schneider MA, Spritzer PM, Soll BMB, Fontanari AMV, Carneiro M, Tovar-Moll F, Costa AB, da Silva DC, Schwarz K. Anes M, Tramontina S, Lobato, MIR (2017). Brain Maturation, Cognition and Voice Pattern in a Gender Dysphoria Case under Pubertal Suppression. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience (Vol. 11). Frontiers Media SA.

Baxendale, Sallie (January 21, 2024). Research Raises Concerns About the Impact of Puberty Blockers on the Development of Cognitive Function. CAN-SG

Lane, Bernard (January 17, 2024). Evidently correct: New support for brain studies: the WHO steers clear of paediatric transition. Gender Clinic News

Manning, Sanchez (January 13, 2024). Puberty blockers given to children who say they were born in the wrong body and want to ‘change gender’ may lower their’ IQs. Daily Mail

Baxendale, Sallie (July 7, 2023). Doctors have failed detransitioners. UnHerd

Baxendale, Sallie (July 26, 2023). Has Gids learned from its failure? UnHerd

Baxendale, Sallie (July 1, 2021). The Teenage Brain. Transgender Trend


Society for Evidence-Based Gender Medicine (January 16, 2024). SEGM NYC23 – Sallie Baxendale – The Effect of Puberty Blockers on the Teenage Brain. YouTube


University College London Hospitals (

  • Sallie Baxendale