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How medical research has failed the vulva owners

How medical research has failed the vulva owners

Ladies and vulva owners, it’s no secret that our medical symptoms are dismissed as us “overthinking” or “being hormonal” or WORSE “just another woman who can’t handle pain”! We’ve not only seen it happen around us all the time but we’ve experienced it too. 
Disney gif. Anger from Inside Out clenches his fists in rage before the top of his head explodes upward in a pyre of flames. Fear cowers behind him.

The dark and dirty secret of the healthcare industry needs way more conversation and hoarse shouting than is currently the case: medical research is for Men, by Men and around Men and because of this gigantic, Africa-sized blind spot, women die, suffer and probably will continue to do so in the future. The bias is so deep that even when animals are used for testing, they are all male— I can almost hear Tom and Jerry laughing at us.

But no more, in this blog we’re going to be raging and ranting (AND NO IT’S NOT CAUSE WE ARE PMSING) about how the medical world has failed us vulva-owners. Also, going ahead we may interchange the term vulva-owners with women, we don’t mean to alienate those who identify as women and don’t have vulvas! That’s J.K Rowling’s job. 

Harry Potter Side Eye GIF

Sophie has no choice: A brief history of the bias

It took the medical testing community a really long time to realize that they were so focussed on mice and men, that they failed to focus on 50% of the population: VULVA OWNERS! 

To put it bluntly, women have traditionally not been considered good test subjects. Three reasons are cited for the same, reasons that will frankly make you groan:

Menstruation: Whether it is religious practices or scientific attitudes, men’s discomfort with menstruation is always the loudest voice in the room. Historically, women were not included in clinical testing because their varying hormone levels during their menstruation cycle could have screwed up the results.        

Pregnancy: You know men who treat women like bone china when they are pregnant? Well, medical professionals are no different and deserve as much scorn. Pregnant women were kept out of the purview of testing in order to protect them and women who got pregnant during a clinical trial, were also not considered ideal test subjects.     

Same-Same: Men and women are no different sounds like such an anodyne opinion on the surface, but not when it comes to testing. For the longest time, most medical professionals found it unnecessary to test men and women separately because they thought there wasn’t much difference in how their bodies react to drugs, now we know for a fact that it is untrue.

A good case in point is Ambien, a sleep aid approved in 1992 in US. The authorities were quite aware that the drugs' after effects didn’t wear off by morning and even issued advisory, discouraging users against morning walks and driving. But it took researchers years to realize that this problem affected women in a far greater ratio than men as their bodies metabolized the drug very differently.    

When Heart Attack met Sally 

The sad reality is that when doctors and other medical professionals discriminate, diseases and illnesses indiscriminately attack women. The facts speak for themselves: 

According to the National Institutes for health, contrary to popular belief, women are two times more likely than men to perish from heart attacks. While the chances of women getting a heart attack is the same as men, they are more likely to die from them.

Among the nonsmokers who die of lung cancer—Yes, nonsmokers can also get cancer— women are twice as likely to perish compared to men.

Women are also more susceptible to autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, and frankly we don't fully know why. Another alarming fact is that in spite of suffering more from chronic pain than men, women are less frequently treated for it.

Another condition about which women feel unseen and unheard is Menopause. Menopause is a time of great change for women, its symptoms include fatigue, hot flushes, wistfully looking at skinny jeans, etc. But where is the research to understand menopause better, where is the hand holding that the medical community can do to ease the pain?        

Look, the medical community might be lagging but we are not, till they find a solution, you can soothe your anxieties by trying our Lit clittoral stimulator or Flex Massager internal and external personal massager

The fault is in our doctors 

Just like our sitcoms, clinical trials have also become more representative, and more diverse. Lately, researchers have started paying more attention to sex as a possible biological variable in animal and human studies.

But the faults still persist, one of the biggest problems is that doctors do acknowledge that lab and drug trials should include more women, but only for the sake of having a representative sampling of the population, not to focus attention on them.

Barbie needs Ken and medical attention

Women have been a silent patient for far too long, we need to raise a stink about this issue—where is a bullhorn when you need one! In past few years, diversity in hiring, in decision making, in politics and in board rooms has been the key word. Women, disabled women, women of color want to be checked out the right way, perverts out, doctors in. 

Now, it is time that women were listened to by doctors, healthcare professionals, our problems are not to be pooh poohed. As a negotiating move, I suggest, if men are willing to pay close attention to our bodies— In the medical setting and in bed— we might give them a pass on BO for a week. Maybe two. But that’s it. Is anyone listening?   

The Office gif. Ellie Kemper as Erin pops up from her seat and starts violently fist pumping the air and yelling out in immense excitement.

Empowering ourselves to take control of our sexual health is imperative amidst the systemic failures in medical research. Through our exploration of self-pleasure and the utilization of vibrators and sex toys, we reclaim agency over our bodies and challenge the status quo. Embracing our sexuality not only fosters personal empowerment but also serves as a form of resistance against the prevailing biases in healthcare. For further insights into reclaiming autonomy and embracing diverse sexual experiences, delve into our enlightening discourse on kinks and masturbation.

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About the author

 

Vidisha is a screenplay writer who also loves writing the occasional blogs. She's smitten by all things funny, sassy, and creative. And has the penchant for cracking the odd joke. She also wrote this bio. 

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