[SydPhil] MQ philosophy lunchtime seminar

Rachael Brown rachael.brown at mq.edu.au
Fri Mar 27 13:29:16 AEDT 2015

Please note the following upcoming event as part of the Macquarie
University Philosophy Work in Progress Seminar Series

(regular attendees, please also note we are in W6A, Rm 107 this week NOT
the Blackshield Room)

Hips, knees and hernia mesh: when does gender matter in surgery?

Katrina Hutchison* and Wendy Rogers (Macquarie University)
Tuesday 31st March, 1-2pm
W6A Room 107

Women are disproportionately harmed by at least some classes of surgical
implants.  For example mesh products used to treat incontinence in women
are associated with a range of complications that don't occur when the same
meshes are used to treat hernia in men, and the failure rate of
metal-on-metal hips in women is approximately double that in men. In this
paper we investigate the gendered dimensions of device failures and
complications. Potential reasons for higher rates of harms to women from
surgical devices include: systematic biases in health research and device
regulation; gendered norms about the human body at play in models for
biomechanical testing of surgical implants; and discounting of anatomical
differences between men and women by researchers, regulators or clinicians.
Gendered norms leading to higher rates of use of prostheses and devices in
women (for example breast and other cosmetic surgical implants) may also be
a cause of increased harms to women. Given that some of these explanations
are fairly obvious and would be relatively straightforward to address, we
look to feminist work to understand what might support and maintain them in
the current environment.  We then canvas potential measures to mitigate the
increased risk of harms faced by women who use surgically implanted devices.

Feel free to bring your lunch. Bring a coffee mug if you would like a tea
or coffee.

Contact: Rachael Brown (rachael.brown at mq.edu.au), Paul Formosa (
paul.formosa at mq.edu.au), Mike Olson (michael.olson at mq.edu.au)

A google calendar with details of other events in this series is available
for viewing and subscription by following this link:


Other upcoming talks in this series:
April 21st: Colin Klein (Macquarie)
April 28th: Wendy Rogers (Macquarie)
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