Up@dawn 2.0

Monday, February 4, 2013

Group One: Case Five

On Contraception:

  1. There is a clear line between drugs that aid and drugs that conquer; for example, over the counter drugs addressing cold symptoms, allergies, and other common bodily "inconveniences" help reduce the discomfort while the body maintains control of the process. For example, taking dayquil for the flu does not replace the body's immune system in the Innate Immune Response or Adaptive. Instead, it allows the body to continue its work, while reducing physical symptoms so that the patient maintains activity. 
  2. To address the first issue the author contemplates; we must decide whether contraception is an "aid" or a "conquerer". Does the pill, Seasonale, and Lybrel help address discomforting symptoms like cramping and emotional "swings" or does it "eliminate" them completely.
  3. Designating what the drug is meant to do, and comparing it to what it actually does would allow us to designate its "unnatural" or "acceptable unnaturalness". 
  4. Like cigarettes in the 60s; the effects of tobacco were studied sufficiently, however, the addition of tar, nicotine, and other chemicals in cigarettes were not common knowledge during the time. Cigarettes were considered an acceptable risk because the harm they caused was smaller than the stress they satisfied. However, after extensive research and serious physiological diseases becoming more visible and linked to cigarette smoking, the product's image has completely changed, and so has the public's attraction to it.
  5. In my opinion, one of very little value given that the matter in no way applies to a man's body, I imagine that we should maintain the body's functionality and focus on addressing the symptoms rather than curing the process and ridding women of it. I'm not scientifically adequate to appropriately make the following statement but feel confident in its truthful value: "if the body, without any outside interference, requires a monthly excretion of its filtered fluid than shutting off that mechanism seems quite dangerous."
  6. While we're at it; peeing and pooping are also quite an inconvenience, maybe one day we'll find a way to stop those too. Imagine all the extra room you'll have in your bathroom when you don't need a toilette lol


  1. (from group 4) I appreciate your stance on "leaving the body's natural functions in tact." I agree completely. But from a economic standpoint, I would selfishly prefer woman who do not want kids to not have them. Moral implications aside, at what point do we let personal choice interfere with our responsibility to the over-populating world?

    1. North Carolina sterilized an estimated 7,600 people between 1929 and 1974, many of them against their will. The state apologized for the sterilizations in 2002, and Gov. Bev Perdue created the compensation task force last year. Many states once had eugenics programs, and seven have apologized, but North Carolina is the first to consider paying victims. CNN.

  2. I agree Heather. As we approach our (Homo Sapiens') carrying capacity for the planet, it is very important to think about ways in which to slow population growth. I do feel that the physiology resulting in menstrual cycles is important to the female body, however, and that by using medications to simply stop the occurrence, as some do, it is likely to have some effects the longer the use continues. Many patients, those that do not take responsibility for their own healthcare for example, may use these medications as an excuse or as a way to avoid an inconvenience. It is important to explain the proper use of these medications to all patients who request them. This includes making sure that patients whom state that they would not like to have children understand that it is possible to still have children, or that it could become more difficult in the future should they ever change their minds.

  3. he male reproductive system functions in a manner that is 100% congruent to the female reproductive system. That being said, any alteration to the way females participate (involuntarily I might add) in the menstrual cycle could have detrimental effects on their ability to reproduce. What I mean is that males and females evolved together, but now we are seeing a time where one of the most feminine qualities is being removed while the males continue down the same evolutionary path we were on. I don't know what could happen exactly, no one does, but I do know that our bodies are better at adapting to change than just about anything and so it will be interesting to see where this takes us. As far as symptoms go, women should not have to deal with the pain and psychological instability (mood swings, if you will). Furthermore, male counterparts are the unfortunate recipients on the other end (don't deny it) of that bad week. All in all, like Tim said, education is really the key. Let them know what they're getting into so they can make an informed decision.T

  4. I agree with Jacob. We have no idea of the side effects that will result from taking a drug that removes the menstrual cycle. As Alex stated, lets remove the inconvenient symptoms without removing the process. However, I write this with caution because I am a male, I have no idea what a menstrual cycle is like and can not personally identify with the female on what it is like. That being said the woman should have a choice whether to take such a drug or not. However the risks should be informed. One of those risks being WE DON'T KNOW WHAT ALL IS GOING TO HAPPEN. I've yet to hear of a widely used drug that is void of side effects. Is it really worth possible side effects such as infertility, permanent hormone imbalance? I don't think it's worth the risk, but let the female personally be the one to decide

  5. I agree. Time alone will tell what lasting effects this change to female physiology will have, if any. Patients must be made fully aware of the consequences of their actions. This is a big step, and many big steps such as this end with "have you suffered from____? well we would love to help you sue your physician!" commercials. Proper research can help avoid this situation, but will never cure it, everyone's body is different and it is near impossible to perfectly predict a person's reaction to a substance. But the $5000 genome printer couldn't hurt...