Inconvenient Women Insist on Diagnostic Tests,
Before Swallowing a “BIG-Pharma Cure”
I have been researching the endocrine system and its integral role in a woman’s health. Our endocrine system is composed of a network of organs and glands responsible for producing, storing, and secreting hormones that help to maintain and control vital functions such as growth, reproduction, and energy levels. There are several endocrine system diseases that result from disruptions in this complex system. In women, many of these diseases go undiagnosed or are misdiagnosed during the ‘infamous HMO 6-minute diagnosis’ of unspecified female issues. Women are told they probably are suffering PMS or worse, PMDD and issued a prescription for SARAFEM® (PROZAC’s new girly name) told to set her next appointment and the office visit done.
Recently a health advocacy study reported that if a man and a woman presented with the same symptoms, HMO doctors were twice as likely to order a blood panel for the male as for the female. Currently, are active legal actions concerning HMO’s who gave bonuses to doctors who held down costs by cutting the number of diagnostic tests. Patients were denied simple blood panels that would quickly indicate common endocrine system “malfunctions” that can lead to thyroid disorders, diabetes, or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) — one of the more common endocrine system diseases, affecting between 7% to 10% of women aged 15 to 45. PCOS is a condition associated with symptoms of infrequent or irregular menstruation, male hormone excess symptoms like hirsutism (increased and unwanted hair growth) and acne. Patients with PCOS can also have multiple egg-containing cysts on the ovaries. They are higher risk for metabolic complications like diabetes and hypertension.
So aside from grooming our readers to be VERY INCONVENIENT WOMEN, and INSISTING on a complete blood work-up before accepting a prescription, what other advice can we give you?
Be proactive about your own health.
If you get a PMS-type diagnosis, skip the “Don’t-Worry-Be-Happy-Pills. Relieving your symptoms can be as straight forward as adding exercise, improving your diet, and developing better sleep habits.
In our next Inconvenient Woman Blog, We’ll look at how adding just a little more exercise to your weekly routine can net big health advantages.