AUTHOR
AMANDA
FRANCIS
Jul
4
2019
AUTHOR
AMANDA
FRANCIS
Jul
4
2019
Wellness

Why Medicine Must Challenge Sex Bias in Women's Health & Treatments

Why Medicine Must Challenge Sex Bias in Women's Health & Treatments

"Bikini Medicine!" Yes, that's what women's health is being called these days because of an increased focus on breast diseases and gynecologic/obstetric issues. Everything else is just the same as men, like heart health, for example, right? Wrong. The medical fraternity is slowly waking up to the fact that women differ from men in every health problem that occurs. 

Women are stigmatized as being anxious

"We now know that there are differences between the sexes in every health condition. Any organ system that you pick, any health condition that you pick," says Kim Templeton, former president of the American Medical Women's Association and professor of orthopedic surgery at The University of Kansas Medical Center. While medical health education routinely ignores the gender difference in the health of women from men, women are being betrayed at the doctor's office time and again, despite making the right decision when it comes to their health. "Women are stigmatized as being anxious," says Dr. Alyson McGregor, an emergency medicine physician, she treats young women who are struggling with heart health. Her book, 'Sex Matters: How Male-Centric Medicine Endangers Women’s Health and What We Can Do About It,' reveals the reality of the matter and how more needs to be done to discover female physiology. The medical field is constantly evolving and a majority of women health practitioners believe that the next phase should be women-centric research on various diseases.

17% of women have been treated differently because of their gender

An ongoing project conducted by TODAY, titled 'Dismissed' is using real experiences of women in collaboration with Survey Monkey to defy sex and gender bias. The survey stated that 52 percent of women believe that gender discrimination is a serious problem towards patients in the healthcare system as opposed to 36 percent of men. Also, 17 percent of women have been treated differently because of their gender by a medical provider, while only 6 percent of men experienced the same. Dr. Jenkins, a professor of medicine at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center said, "Women can be harmed by practicing one-sex medicine or gender-blind medicine. We need to stop ignoring the mountain of evidence that we have that men and women are different." The truth is that this is not just a trend in healthcare, but it is a matter of good science because being of certain sex does affect one's health and therefore, gender-specific symptoms if gone undiagnosed can lead to a number of fatalities in women.

Image credit: Startup Health HQ
 

AUTHOR
AMANDA FRANCIS

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