Intersex children— born with chromosomes, gonads, internal or external sex organs that don’t match typical social expectations of male or female—are born perfectly healthy in most cases.

However, since the 1960s, doctors in the US and around the world have routinely performed surgery to “normalize” their bodies, long before they are old enough to decide for themselves whether they want these procedures. The surgery is medically unnecessary, irreversible, often traumatizing, and carries a risk of lifelong harm.

While some surgical intervention is undisputedly medically necessary, some surgeons perform risky cosmetic surgery on intersex children, often before they are even able to talk. The results are often catastrophic and the supposed benefits largely unproven.