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In 46, XY (male Treatment of intersex in humans depends upon the age at which the diagnosis is made.
Historically, if diagnosed at birth, the choice of sex was made (typically by parents) based on the condition of the external genitalia (i.e., which sex organs predominate), after which so-called intersex surgery was performed to remove the gonads of the opposite sex.
In 1966, the IAAF went further and instituted its first “scientific” sex verification exam, known as the “Barr body test”.
The “sex chromatin” test determined the chromosomal composition of the athlete with a swab of the inside of the cheek.
The IOC did wait until 2000 to officially cease its genetic testing regulations, though no women were barred from competing in the interim.
No major issues arose again until the success of South African runner Caster Semenya, who won the 2009 IAAF women’s world championship 800 meter race in spectacular fashion.
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Individuals with a 46, XX chromosome complement usually have ambiguous external genitalia with a sizable phallus and are therefore often reared as males.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled that there was a lack of evidence that increased levels of testosterone in the hyperandrogenous led to an increase in female athletic performance. By the summer of 2017, we can expect the IAAF to present its findings and again draw another problematic line around the elusive notion of femininity in athletics.
Sports competitions have been legislating gender for nearly a century, but as our understanding of gender and sexual identity evolves, it has become more difficult for sports to exist within a neat gender binary.
If it detected a Y chromosome, the female athlete was determined to have failed and was ostracized from the competitive sporting 24 years, the Barr body test was in place, but problems with the sex chromatin test arose immediately.
The first athlete to fail the test was Polish Olympic sprinter Ewa Klubukowska. When Klubukowska failed the test in 1967 she was banned from competing in the 1968 Mexico City Games and was stripped of her medal.