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Medical Research Focuses on Gendered Approach to Treatment

In recent years, scientists have discovered that some diseases affect women and men differently, and that treatments for the same disease should perhaps vary by sex. The Associated Press reports that the medical community is beginning to realize that women’s health involves more than just the body parts that make them female. In the past several months, two medical textbooks were published that are devoted solely to gender differences in all areas of medicine. Dr. Catherine DeAngelis became the first female editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association in 1999. Since then, DeAngelis has made it a goal that the Journal publishes only medical research that provides a breakdown of data by gender, unless the research covers a disease that affects only women or only men, according to the Associated Press. The latest issue of American Medical News credited the effect of the women’s rights movement with altering the way women’s health is seen by medical professionals and patients. Women have been the leaders in successful drives to fund research for breast cancer and heart disease as well as educating other women on the importance of prevention and early detection, in ensuring the prevalence of the birth-control pill and creation of women’s health clinics; and in lengthening hospital stays for childbirth and mastectomies. JOIN the Feminist Majority

Sources:

Associated Press 9/25/04; American Medical News 10/4/04 issue

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