Is Pregnancy A Medical Issue?

1685 WordsNov 25, 20157 Pages
Medicalization is a term used to define common human problems—physical or otherwise—that have entered the medical realm because they have been accepted as treatable illnesses. The medical community has expanded the number of medicalized conditions to include pregnancy, despite the fact that pregnancy is not considered a regular illness or medical issue to most individuals. In the beginning of the twentieth century, women only saw physicians before birth if there were complications, and usually gave birth naturally at home (Barker, 1998). The extent to which pregnancy has been medicalized can be exemplified through its estimated direct medical cost, which was 18.29 billion in 2005, claiming the highest cost of all notable medicalized…show more content…
Thus, these destructive phrases employed by practitioners that describe the fetus to justify possibilities of unethical treatment, such as the unnecessary induction of labour and recommendations for invasive deliveries and terminations, have become standardized. The language has thus, shifted the conception of pregnancy from a natural life-giving act to diseased, which, for many, could justify its medicalization. The misconception adopted by women because of biomedical rhetoric demonstrates the influential role of healthcare professionals on societal norms. Furthermore, women should be thoroughly educated regarding their pregnancy when visiting a physician; viewing the infant as non-human or as a virus invading the body could alarm the mother into believing that she is in danger and promotes improper characterization of pregnancy as a medical issue. To counter the perverse rhetoric, it should be acknowledged that the only difference between any stages of life from embryo to fetus to infant to adult, is the degree of maturation (George & Lee, 2009). As well, the mother should be informed that a woman’s body is naturally built for pregnancy without drastic changes to lifestyle (Lothian, 2009). Since the status of the preborn infant is mutable within the medical community, medicalization has been sanctioned to protect the endangered health
Open Document