626… Not Just Tuskeegee

More about medical experiments conducted by the US Government on patients in Guatemala. The studies are chillingly similar to the sort of experimentation done on prisoners by the Nazis and Japanese during WWII.

Black Americans before Civil Rights feared going to hospitals in some parts of the country…

Perhaps for good reason. Dr John Cutler appears to be our very own Dr. Mengele.

Guatemala Experiments: Syphilis Infections, Other Shocking Details Revealed About U.S. Medical Experiments

A presidential panel on Monday disclosed shocking new details of U.S. medical experiments done in Guatemala in the 1940s, including a decision to re-infect a dying woman in a syphilis study.

The Guatemala experiments are already considered one of the darker episodes of medical research in U.S. history, but panel members say the new information indicates that the researchers were unusually unethical, even when placed into the historical context of a different era.

“The researchers put their own medical advancement first and human decency a far second,” said Anita Allen, a member of the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues.

From 1946-48, the U.S. Public Health Service and the Pan American Sanitary Bureau worked with several Guatemalan government agencies to do medical research – paid for by the U.S. government – that involved deliberately exposing people to sexually transmitted diseases.

The researchers apparently were trying to see if penicillin, then relatively new, could prevent infections in the 1,300 people exposed to syphilis, gonorrhea or chancroid. Those infected included soldiers, prostitutes, prisoners and mental patients with syphilis.

The commission revealed Monday that only about 700 of those infected received some sort of treatment. Also, 83 people died, although it’s not clear if the deaths were directly due to the experiments.

The research came up with no useful medical information, according to some experts. It was hidden for decades but came to light last year, after a Wellesley College medical historian discovered records among the papers of Dr. John Cutler, who led the experiments.

President Barack Obama called Guatemala’s president, Alvaro Colom, to apologize. He also ordered his bioethics commission to review the Guatemala experiments. That work is nearly done. Though the final report is not due until next month, commission members discussed some of the findings at a meeting Monday in Washington.

They revealed that some of the experiments were more shocking than was previously known.

For example, seven women with epilepsy, who were housed at Guatemala’s Asilo de Alienados (Home for the Insane), were injected with syphilis below the back of the skull, a risky procedure. The researchers thought the new infection might somehow help cure epilepsy. The women each got bacterial meningitis, probably as a result of the unsterile injections, but were treated.

Perhaps the most disturbing details involved a female syphilis patient with an undisclosed terminal illness. The researchers, curious to see the impact of an additional infection, infected her with gonorrhea in her eyes and elsewhere. Six months later she died.

Dr. Amy Gutmann, head of the commission, described the case as “chillingly egregious.”…

Ain’t Gonna Bump No More…

This one is amazing… You guys who are in to “thick” women better think about this!

Study: Obese Women Have Less Sex, More Babies

Obese women are having less sex and more unwanted pregnancies, according to a study released today.

Sounds like a contradiction, but French researchers in the British Medical Journal explain that obese women – those with a body mass index greater than 30 – report having fewer sexual partners and less sex in general, but were less inclined to seek out contraception or talk to their doctors about reproductive health.

The study found obese women were less likely to use oral contraception, and more likely to rely on less effective birth control methods, such as withdrawal. Not surprisingly, the obese women surveyed had four times as many unplanned pregnancies.

Dr. Sandy Goldbeck-Wood, a specialist in psychosexual medicine at a London sexual health clinic, said physicians must talk to obese women about birth control. “Doctors need to get over their own embarrassment and ask the difficult questions,” she said.

Goldbeck-Wood was not involved in the study but wrote an accompanying editorial in the British Medical Journal.

Researchers found that obese men didn’t do well either. During five years of the study, they were 10 times more likely to catch a sexually transmitted disease than their thinner counterparts and more than twice as likely to have problems with erectile dysfunction.

To get their results, experts interviewed nearly 10,000 French men and women aged 18 to 69 about their sexual experiences and analyzed the results based on their Body Mass Index (BMI).

People with a BMI of 18-24 are considered to have a healthy weight. Those with a BMI of 25 or above are considered overweight, and people with a BMI of 30 or more are classified as obese.

In the United States, two thirds of the population is considered overweight or obese, according to Reuters.

You know it’s comin’!

Teen Pregnacy and STDs Rise During Bush Administration

Another in a long list of conservative failures -

Babies Making Babies, and Babies Sick

A Time Magazine Cover from 1985 covering the epidemic in Teen Age pregnancy. After years of turning this around, it's on the rise again, along with the rate of deadly STDs among children because of policies of the Bush Administration.

Teenage pregnancies and syphilis have risen sharply among a generation of American school girls who were urged to avoid sex before marriage under George Bush’s evangelically-driven education policy, according to a new report by the US’s major public health body.
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