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BMJ Editorial: Ending the Neglect of Women's Health in Research

Liisa Galea and Rulan Parekh wrote an editorial for the British Medical Journal

women's health, research

In this editorial, Drs. Galea and Parekh explain, building off of findings that the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the US and Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) in Canada, have underfunded women's health research. Our research showed that approximately 6% of funding abstracts at CIHR mentioned women's health. Galea and Parekh explain why this matters to improve the health for all people, regardless of their sex recorded at birth or gender identity. Did you know for example, that females with multiple sclerosis go into remission during pregnancy? Discovering why that might be could lead to future therapeutics to help males and intersex individuals with multiple sclerosis. I have heard over and over again that women's health is niche and thought of as "bikini medicine". But women's health is not just about fertility or gynecological disorders. Many disorders and diseases impact human females disproportionately including depression, autoimmune disorders, migraines and Alzheimer's disease. These disorders are not uncommon and need to be studied with a women's health lens. Female-specific experiences deserve more attention by researchers, and funders. The repercussions of underfunding and understudy likely lead to the reason why human females are diagnosed two years later than males on average.

Their article addresses the problems facing women's health research, and provides some possible solutions to a vast and urgent issue. You can read it here!



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