For better or worse, consciously or subconsciously, no matter what we were taught in kindergarten, we all judge a book by its cover from time to time. More to the point, we judge one another based on looks and can easily find ourselves assuming that because someone is thin, they're fit and healthy, and if they're overweight, they're definitely sick or at least at risk of heart disease. Turns out, even doctors are guilty of it -- and this embarrassing habit is putting women's lives in danger.
A French study of over 15,000 people found that female patients were half as likely as men to be treated for one of the leading causes of heart problems/strokes. And docs were slow to diagnose the most common form of abnormal cardiac rhythm in women, increasing their risk of stroke and death. The reason is mind-blowing, heartbreaking, and downright embarrassing ...
"Doctors ... too often they will think if a female patient looks healthy, and dresses smartly, and looks after herself, she is probably okay," Dr. Pierre Sabouret, lead researcher and cardiologist from Heart Institute-Pitie Salpetriere Hospital in Paris, reveals. What the hell ...?!? It also bears mentioning that doctors not realize how common the heart condition was among women and fail to carry out tests to establish the likelihood of a problem.
Face meet palm. Since when has research proven that how we look -- and geeze, how we DRESS! -- accurately reflects what's going on inside of our bodies? If that was the case, anyone could be a doctor, I guess. My mom or BFF probably could have diagnosed me with hypothyroidism and my other hormonal issues just by glimpsing me up and down and noting my penchant for yoga pants most days of the week, huh?
What's more, research has shown that someone you might deem "fat" may be much healthier than someone you'd perceive as "thin." When are we all -- including medical professionals! -- gonna soak up that concept?
These findings aren't only completely ridiculous. They're shameful! Modern medicine is supposed to be better than this. Above this. Maybe, hopefully, this will be a wake-up call to make sure that doctors don't let superficial first impressions determine diagnoses. Ugh.
Have you ever felt like the way you looked/dressed affected how you were tested/treated/diagnosed by a doc?