Profitable Designer Diseases
One of my most fascinating, ongoing ‘Holy Hormone Honey!’ research projects is tracking the connection between Big Pharma, the FDA and medical community. My writing partner, Leslie Botha, asked a simple question, “Girls and women have survived and thrived for eons. When and who declared that we must have some sort of medical intervention at every phase of our natural cycles?”
This research was originally published in the fall of 2003. The questions raised by Ray Moynihan of the British Medical Journal are still relevant. The much too close relationship between Big Pharma, the health industry, medical profession and its ‘official publication, JAMA is a little to close for the health and wellness of American women and girls.
When dealing with your health care professional, remember the inconvenient woman’s mantra, “ Doctors are not infallible: Ask Questions, Demand Answers, Verify Answers with an Independent Source, and Make informed Decisions. It’s YOUR Body and Your Life. —HSCB
The ‘Medicalization’ of Women’s Bodies
Drug companies are sponsoring creation of a new medical disorder known as female sexual dysfunction in order to build markets for drugs among women, despite controversy surrounding the ‘medicalization’ of sexual problems, finds an article in this week’s British Medical Journal.
Over the past six years, researchers with close ties to the pharmaceutical industry have been developing and defining the new disorder at company sponsored meetings, writes journalist, Ray Moynihan.
One of the milestones in the making of the new disorder was a JAMA article in February 1999, which suggested that 43% of women aged 18-59 have female sexual dysfunction. However, leading researchers have raised serious concerns about this figure, describing it as misleading and potentially dangerous.
Many researchers believe that portraying sexual difficulties as a dysfunction will encourage doctors to prescribe drugs that change sexual function, when attention should be paid to other aspects of the woman’s life. It’s also likely to make women think they have a malfunction when they do not. But perhaps the greatest concern is the ever-narrowing definitions of “normal” which help turn the complaints of the healthy into the conditions of the sick, says the author.
Although the corporate sponsored creation of a disease is not a new phenomenon, the role of drug companies in the construction and promotion of new conditions needs more public scrutiny, he concludes.
Can We Have an Amen, Sisters!