Mohammad Saberi, the head of the Tehran Department of Forensic Psychiatry, has reported that there are eight times as many male-to-female sex change operations in Iran as there are female-to-male operations.

The Mehr News Agency reports that Saberi said: “In Iran, one in every 50,000 to 100,000 people suffers from gender identity disorder.”

He added that sex change operations have a 30-year history in Iran, and of the 60 cases of the disorder reported each year, about 40 people are approved for sex change operations.

Saberi reported that the operations are now well regulated after being brought under the supervision of the Department of Forensic Psychiatry, which has developed a strict protocol.

He reported that in the past 18 years, the youngest person to undergo a sex change operation was 14 and the oldest was 53.

He stressed, however, that under the new regulations, sex change operations are not approved for minors.