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Maya Dusenbery: When Doctors Dismiss Women's Pain

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS news' started by Kalliope, Apr 25, 2018.

  1. Kalliope

    Kalliope Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Lenny: When Doctors Dismiss Women's pain by Maya Dusenbery

    Many conditions that disproportionately affect women — including endometriosis, fibromyalgia, vulvodynia, interstitial cystitis, and chronic fatigue syndrome — are still very poorly understood, yet receive minuscule amounts of research funding. And since medical education evolves at a snail’s pace, much of the new knowledge about women’s health that has emerged over the past few decades still hasn’t made its way into clinical practice.


    Encountering this kind of medical gaslighting when you have a degree of privilege, like I do, can feel a bit like walking through the looking glass and finding yourself in 1950. As one woman, the filmmaker Jen Brea, told me, “It was the first time in my life that anyone had ever doubted my account of the world.”
  2. Sly Saint

    Sly Saint Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    I was channel hopping last night and caught a couple of bits from Channel 5's
    GPs behind closed doors. There was one consultation where a GP was badly trying to explain MUS to a patient who had chronic pain and a bowel problem caused by a surgical error (perforated bowel).
    Another woman, who had been diagnosed with Lupus, and was in constant pain; the GP listed a few symptoms and told her she probably had Fibromyalgia as well, printed off a leaflet and sent her on her way.

  3. JemPD

    JemPD Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    yeah i saw part of another episode last night & at least half of the consults started with the Dr saying some version of "whats been going on in your life"? "have you been under stress"? "are you feeling anxious".... before they even examined the patient. So awful i turned off
  4. Arnie Pye

    Arnie Pye Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    I watched a small part of one episode of that program some time ago. A woman who was probably in her late 20s or early 30s was describing her severe period pains to the doctor. The doctor didn't touch her or examine her in any way, and interrupted her after less than two minutes to say she thought the woman was depressed. The woman looked very startled and her jaw dropped a bit, she lost the thread of what she was saying, was given a prescription for anti-depressants and was sent on her way.

    Obviously I have no idea what happened to the woman after that but I can guess one likely sequence of events if the patient took the pills. She will still have severe period pains, her emotions will have been dulled, she may well have developed severe headaches and/or twitches, she has probably lost her libido, and now she has an addiction to a drug she never needed in the first place. She may have to stay on the drugs for life if she can't stand the withdrawal symptoms. She will continue to have severe period pains, which won't be investigated or treated in any way (because she's mentally ill - why else would she be on anti-depressants - and doctors "know" that all women exaggerate and seek attention for their mental distress). And she may find it harder to get any treatment for any other medical condition she has because she has been classified as mentally ill and therefore any other condition is clearly an effect of her mental illness.
    Little Bluestem, Lidia, Trish and 5 others like this.

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