Updated: OCTOBER 23, 2017
A transsexual (TS) is an individual who identifies with the opposite gender to that which they present anatomically. Transsexual is often distinguished from the umbrella term transgender because, unlike most transgender people, transsexuals typically wish to undergo steps to alter their physical gender. The term transsexual can be used as a noun for such a person, or as an adjective to describe something which concerns this inconsistent gender identification. For example, transsexual literature features transsexual characters in key roles.
If a person feels uncomfortable in their body, due to the fact that they do not relate to their anatomical gender, or if a person's functioning suffers due to this gender conflict, they may be medically diagnosed as transsexual.
Transsexual is sometimes spelled transexual. Transsexual is often abbreviated to the acronym TS. When used as an adjective, transsexual may be shortened to trans.
More About Transsexual (TS)
Transsexuality appears to have little to do with sexual orientation. Some transsexuals identify as heterosexual, while others consider themselves to be homosexual or bisexual.
Transsexuals may be ostracized by some cultures and religious groups who disapprove of the way these people differ from the norm. Individuals who feel prejudiced towards transsexuals are said to be transphobic. Pressure from society and internal conflict often leads transsexuals to undergo sex reassignment surgery, in which their physical body is altered to match their perceived gender.
However, many other transsexuals do not opt for surgery. They might be wary of undergoing surgical procedures due to risk of nerve damage and other medical problems, or they may simply feel comfortable taking non-surgical action to align with another gender. Such non-surgical action may include dressing in the clothes of the gender they identify with, cross-dressing, or adopting a name or mannerisms associated with the opposite gender. Other transsexuals make no obvious attempts to modify themselves, yet still prefer to identify as transsexual rather than transgender.
Transsexuals should not be confused with intersex people. While both often wish to alter their bodies to correspond to the gender they identify with, transsexuals have anatomy consistent with a single gender. In contrast, intersex people have anatomy that does not fit a typical male or female mold.