Race-based Medicine

I recently discovered that doctors have been paying more attention to the different types of medical problems associated with various races and ethnicities. A couple of the articles I read were really fascinating. Some doctors think that entertaining this idea will lead on as some sort of racism and are hesitant to go ahead with studies. But, others are realizing that there are some significant differences among groups and their responses to different types of medications and treatments.
Whether these doctors’ claims are valid or not, should this really be considered a racial issue? Could it help doctors and patients in the future, or will it cause even more racial profiling than probably already exists when patients go to a doctor visit? In my opinion I think it is a good thing that doctors are at least looking into something like this. From what I have read there seems to be some concrete evidence for some of the differences among race and related health issues. If this is true, it could undoubtedly help people and even perhaps help them live longer if not healthier lives. I don’t think any of these doctors should be considered racist unless they begin to make large race-based assumptions or anything of that sort.

This slide show was on forbes.com. It shows some of the differences among race and gender to various medications and treatments.

race/gender-based medicine

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One Response to Race-based Medicine

  1. katemenosky says:

    The slide show was very interesting. I had no idea that so much research had already been conducted to observe the differing effects of medical treatments on different races. While I understand that this could lead to racial profiling in the doctor’s office, this could be a huge break through and potentially cutdown expenses when it comes to treating serious diseases and conditions. Logically it makes sense to give a person a medication that will work best for them based on their entire medical history, and if basing it on their race as well results in faster recovery and is more effective, then I’m all for it.
    I’m sure insurance companies would be skeptical of these types of medicines which could lead to problems for people of a different race getting their needed coverage, it could actually be a way to save money. Instead of trying A, B and C for a black man suffering for the same condition as a white man who takes A and shows improvement, they might skip to D, E or F because those drugs seem to be more effective for him. This could save both doctors and patients time and money from running down a list of ineffective treatments.

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