Tag Archives: women’s pain

Round up of links: International Women’s Day

4 Aug

Below the fold are a number of links to different pieces on sexism, which were originally posted to this thread, in the Community section of MyMedia during June and July.

Some of the

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Women’s pain, again.

21 Mar

(Originally posted to the Community section of MyMedia)

I have linked to some stuff on the incredible gender bias in healthcare before.

Here’s a recent BuzzFeed piece, with 29 accounts of specific cases in which women’s health concerns and pain were dismissed out of hand–and some of the indelible, lifelong negative consequences of said dismissal.

This is not new, and while it’s more prevalent among male health providers, even female doctors and nurse practitioners have been indoctrinated into dismissing female pain as exaggerated. We are expected to soldier on, regardless, and we often do, because we also, often, have no choice.

But the fact that we take it doesn’t alleviate the responsibility of those causing harm by dismissing our voices and our knowledge of our own bodies.

Women, pain, and the gender gap in healthcare.

23 May

Originally posted to the Community section at MyMedia.

This one is very tough to write about, for very personal reasons: the incredible gender bias in health care. How many times are women patients in critical circumstances, sent home with what is, essentially, a pat on the head, only to suffer severe health consequences later? That is not a rhetorical question, by the way. The answer is: several times more than men.

Some of you reading may remember reading on the news about a woman in Florida who was asked to leave the emergency room, since there was ‘nothing wrong with her,’ only to die right outside the hospital as the cops who had arrested her for non-compliance were trying to get her into the patrol car. Even as she’s lying on the floor, dying, people around her insist that there’s ‘nothing wrong with her.’

It’s easy to find excuses in the media for this particular case. She was loud, and had a history of being disruptive, she was heavy set (we are told her weight in the freaking headlines, for dog’s sake). But mostly, she was female (and also black), and complaining of pain.

Oh, you may say, but that’s just one case, why are you making noise about that?

Because it’s not one case. From the Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics, in 2001–fifteen freaking years ago!–here’s the abstract from “The Girl Who Cried Pain”

In general, women report more severe levels of pain, more frequent incidences of pain, and pain of longer duration than men, but are nonetheless treated for pain less aggressively. The authors investigate this paradox from two perspectives: Do men and women in fact experience pain differently – whether biologically, cognitively, and/or emotionally? And regardless of the answer, what accounts for the differences in the pain treatment they receive, and what can we do to correct this situation?

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