Archives of Sexual Behavior

, Volume 32, Issue 2, pp 93–101 | Cite as

Psychological Outcomes and Gender-Related Development in Complete Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome

  • Melissa HinesEmail author
  • S. Faisal Ahmed
  • Ieuan A. Hughes


We evaluated psychological outcomes and gender development in 22 women with complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS). Participants were recruited through a medical database (n = 10) or through a patient support group (n = 12). Controls included 14 males and 33 females, of whom 22 were matched to women with CAIS for age, race, and sex-of-rearing. Outcome measures included quality of life (self-esteem and psychological general well-being), gender-related psychological characteristics (gender identity, sexual orientation, and gender role behavior in childhood and adulthood), marital status, personality traits that show sex differences, and hand preferences. Women recruited through the database versus the support group did not differ systematically, and there were no statistically significant differences between the 22 women with CAIS and the matched controls for any psychological outcome. These findings argue against the need for two X chromosomes or ovaries to determine feminine-typical psychological development in humans and reinforce the important role of the androgen receptor in influencing masculine-typical psychological development. They also suggest that psychological outcomes in women with CAIS are similar to those in other women. However, additional attention to more detailed aspects of psychological well-being in CAIS is needed.

intersexuality gender identity sexual orientation androgen androgen insensitivity syndrome sex differences sexual differentiation 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Melissa Hines
    • 1
    Email author
  • S. Faisal Ahmed
    • 2
  • Ieuan A. Hughes
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyCity UniversityLondonEngland, United Kingdom
  2. 2.Department of PaediatricsUniversity of CambridgeCambridgeEngland, United Kingdom

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