Aging & Gerontology


Alzheimer's Caregiving

Body Image

Brain Disorders


Chronic Illness

Cross-Cultural Care

Death & Dying



Family Issues

Gender & Sexuality


Global Health

Grief & Recovery


Maternal & Child Health

Mental Health & Psychology



Pain Management

Sexual Abuse/Violence

Substance Abuse

Suicide/Self Injury

Women's Health

Contact Fanlight

Join Email List

Requests for
Digital Rights

Follow Us! On...

photo First Do No Harm
Total Patient Care for Intersex
From the Intersex Society of North America

'Intersex' describes a range of conditions in which a person is born with mixed or ambiguous sexual anatomy. This video argues for a new understanding of this condition and for a new, patient-centered standard of care.

The traditional medical standard of care has called for 'normal' gender identity to be 'assigned' through genital plastic surgery in infancy or childhood, and to be reinforced by controlling the amount of information given to parents and patients. Many patients over the years have been subjected to multiple surgeries without either they or their parents fully understanding what was being done.

Over the past decade, new medical evidence and advances in healthcare ethics have led to calls for a new approach. The Intersex Society of North America argues that intersexuality is a problem of trauma, secrecy, and stigma, not of gender; that early surgery is unnecessary and often harmful; that withholding information from parents and patients is unethical and destructive; and that professional mental health services for parents and patients are essential elements of good care.

This video outlines the problems with current practices, and provides guidelines for a new standard of care that is more advanced both scientifically and ethically. The program is based on a panel discussion involving medical professionals, an adult with intersex condition, and a parent. Though addressed primarily to medical and mental health professionals, it is quite accessible to lay audiences as well.

20 minutes
© 2002
Purchase $149 DVD
Order No. QA-368

"Effectively advocates for a new, patient-centered standard of medical care, more scientifically and ethically advanced than today's norm. A frank discussion on the issues surrounding intersex conditions. Recommended." Video Librarian

Related Films
One in 2000: Each year an estimated one in two thousand babies are born with anatomy that doesn't clearly mark them as either male or female. This provocative documentary demystifies the issue through intimate and sympathetic profiles of people born with intersex conditions who are living "ordinary" and productive lives.

Other Families: The stories and honest reactions of seven adults, ages 18 to 40, who were raised by lesbian mothers.

Love Makes a Family: This video profiles several gay parents, in a variety of family situations, and also includes interviews with a psychologist and therapist who work with gay families.

Men Talk Sex: Revealing, amusing, frequently exasperating, 20 men from a variety of races, ages, and backgrounds speak out on sex and sexuality. Contains graphic language.

When Women Go Through Menopause, Where do Men Go?: A humorous, engaging, but informative documentary on men's reactions to reaching midlife.

Safety in Numbers: With pathos and humor, this short, experimental drama explores the sometimes unclear boundaries between the behaviors of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and "normalcy."


Related Films

Web Resources

To rent or purchase this film, please visit the Icarus Films website