The New York Times has an interesting article about the speed at which new medical devices are approved by the FDA. The article focuses on a breast cancer treatment that is widely prescribed, but which has not been conclusively shown to be as effective as traditional radiation. [NYT]

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  1. P_Smith says:

    I read once how during the early 1980s, when HIV/AIDS was on the rise and the first medicines like AZT were coming in, women who contracted it had a life expectancy of less than two years while men had six. The reason? Doctors were looking for male symptoms in women instead of identifying symptoms unique to women, thus they weren’t getting proper diagnosis and treatment.

    Doctors were basing their medical trials on men because men don’t have “variables” (menstruation and monthly chemical changes), and then applying those results to women instead of doing proper testing. It seems the medical industry has always put women as second class citizens – viagra for male erections, yes; safe birth control and lessening menopause, no. There seem to be many examples of this.