The Social Construction Of Fibromyalgia Essay

1383 words - 6 pages

The Social Construction of Fibromyalgia

     “With so many people in so much pain, how could fibromyalgia not be a disease?” (Groopman 3) This question regarding the “condition of persistent muscle pain throughout the body, pain that is often accompanied by severe fatigue, insomnia, diarrhea and abdominal bloating, bladder irritation, and headache,” now known as fibromyalgia raises some rather interesting yet complicated issues in today’s health care field such as: What criteria must be met in order for a symptom or a set of symptoms, as is the case here, to be classified as an illness or a disorder? What does the term illness itself mean? What makes up the concept of health? In this paper, I attempt to tackle these questions by examining the process of the social construction, the medicalization, and the medical uncertainties surrounding fibromyalgia. I will first discuss the process of social construction, or the development of a condition as a disorder, also discussing who the key actors in the process are and how everyone involved in the process is affected. Second, I will analyze the process of medicalization, or how a set of symptoms comes to be known as a disorder, complete with treatment and all, of fibromyalgia over the years. Third, I

Mohamed 2
will look at the medical uncertainties, or doubts about knowledge and treatment, regarding fibromyalgia. Last, I will discuss the possible explanations that have been
given to explain fibromyalgia in patients by physicians who are opposed to medicalizing the disorder.
     The term fibromyalgia was introduced in 1990, and since then almost six million Americans, ninety per cent of them being women, have been diagnosed as living with the disorder. Physicians are not sure of the exact cause of the illness, but many of the cases are reported immediately after a traumatic event (Groopman 3). Another puzzling issue here is the absence of any muscular inflammation in the complaining patient or the presence of any abnormal laboratory test results or X-rays. So is it possible for six million patients to be “fooling” physicians? You might have another illness of your own requiring another one of these papers if you’re even considering that absurd idea! Let us begin by defining illness and health. “Modern medicine is based on and dominated by concepts, methods, and principles of the biological sciences…The dominant model of disease today…assumes disease to be fully accounted for by deviations from the norm of measurable biological (somatic) variables” (Mishler 153). “Health, in a positive sense, consists in the capacity of the organism to maintain a balance in which it may be reasonably free of undue pain, discomfort, disability or limitation of action” (Mishler 154). Because of our modern definition and perception of illness or disease, some physicians may ignore patients’ claims of having fibromyalgia, or may even dismiss the patients as “crazy” and...

Find Another Essay On The Social Construction of Fibromyalgia

The social construction of abnormality Essay

1754 words - 8 pages The Social Construction of Abnormality The fields of psychology and psychiatry similarly postulate that there are proper inherent functioning attributes and characteristics, which can be identified in human nature as normal, and this provides the means to characterize ‘abnormal functioning’. Within the diagnostic process of mental disorders there is a classificatory system, which the field of psychiatry developed through means of social

The social construction of abnormality Essay

1431 words - 6 pages to the DSM is highly revered in the tribe, and nothing in mental illness is mind independent for all mental illness classifications lie within the mind. I will now discuss John R. Searle’s The Construction of Social Reality to incorporate the social constructivist perspective that will be used to explain further the reasons for which the theories of mental illness fail to meet the criterion of the standard model. Searle posits that there are

The Social Construction of Gender

856 words - 3 pages Different culture and different periods of history construct gender differently. Due to the social construction of gender, gender always ranks women below men of the same race and class. The rich details of the historical and field studies have given the notion that violence is always related to masculinities. Men is always referred as the subject of the action “violence against female” when speaking of the phrase “violence toward women”. Men

The Social Construction of Gender

1975 words - 8 pages see themselves as women, and adopt what we in our culture would see as traditionally feminine gender roles. This defies our beliefs that men must conform, or are born with traits that we consider “masculine.” In fact, the existence of men who see themselves as women, and possess traits that we generally consider feminine, offers proof that gender is in fact a social construction. If gender was biologically determined, the Kathoey would show the

The social construction of abnormality

1938 words - 8 pages be understood as a collective intentionality, and if that is so, is it not the case that there shall be institutional facts created to help individuals advance towards this collective intentionality? Psychology serves this purpose even though the constitutive rules may be failing. The standard model, however, still does not apply to Searle’s construal of social reality in his attempt to create a theory of social construction that adheres to the

The Social Construction Of Gender

1310 words - 5 pages The Social Construction of Difference Between Genders Gender refers to the cultural shaping of sexual identity; gender is the way in which one's biological sex is given shape and meaning within a culture. To quote Simone de Beauvoir: "you may be born a woman (sex), but you are also made into a woman for the rest of your life (gender)." In her book Gender Trouble, Judith Butler (1990) tells us that gender itself is "never fixed, always fluid

The Social Construction of Health

526 words - 2 pages social classes, within the occupations constituting each social class, between men and women, between ethnic groups, and between regions.(Levitas, 1999) For most sociologists, the existence of these statistical regularities points to social, economic and environmental causes of mortality, rather than causes based on biology or chance.The Role of Medicine and the Medical ProfessionA number of reasons have been put forward to explain why life

The social construction of rea

1660 words - 7 pages encounters are mere branches stemming from it. We create typification(putting elements into categories) that govern our conversations and attempt to establish patterns that can be reused when similar situations and settings occur. The social experience of everyday life is managed through the use of typification that are gradually less specific as they are removed from the face-to-face-situation.SECTION THREE Humans express their emotions most

Judith Lorber's The Social Construction of Gender

860 words - 3 pages Judith Lorber's The Social Construction of Gender Missing Works Cited Judith Lorber is able to convey many of her ideals about our contemporary conceptions of gender in her essay, ?The Social Construction of Gender.? Not only does she clearly express her opinions on the roles of physiological differences of the male and female bodies, but she also elaborates on the roles of the mass media and professional sports among other things. It

The Social Construction of Gender and Sexuality

1290 words - 5 pages The Social Construction of Gender and SexualityAccording to Johnny Weir, "Masculinity is what you believe it to be... [it is] all by perception, [I believe] masculinity and femininity is something that is very old-fashioned... [there is a] whole new generation of people who aren't defined by their race or their sex or who they like to sleep with." This statement exemplifies the definition of gender as a concept; gender is the expectations of a

The Social Construction of Workers’ Collectivism

1704 words - 7 pages . The underlying assumption of this research is that collective interests and identities are socially constructed, formed and sustained through the social processes of interaction. Hence, the study will attempt to explore this process of collectivization through the understanding of the narrative construction of collection action frames by union leaders and the processes by which they link collective action frames to workers. The research approach

Similar Essays

The Social Construction Of Gender Essay

1501 words - 6 pages recognizes.? (Lorber, Night To His Day: The Social Construction of Gender, For Individuals, Gender Means Sameness, Page 463) ??a defining feature of reality construction is to see our world as being the only possible one.? (Kessler & McKenna, Gender: An Ethnomethodological Approach, The Primacy of Gender Attribution, Page 475) Many people don?t realize that gender is a socially constructed accomplishment. People make up methods in their heads about ways

The Social C Onstruction Of Community Essay

902 words - 4 pages Ch. 6: The Social Construction of Community “The social construction of community” looks inside communities. Not only how communities run but how people’s lives look within a certain community. In the previous chapters, communities were seen as structures with changing sociological situations. The previous chapter also looked away from the idea that community was made up of relationships with the people inside the communities. Throughout the

The Social Construction Of Gender Essay

3371 words - 13 pages perspectives on the social construction of gender. Next, I will analyze three case studies and explain how gender construction is applied in order to provide a clearer understanding of gender construction. Lastly, I will develop my own case study by analyzing the movie Mrs. Doubtfire and apply gender construction. SEX AND GENDER In order to grasp the concept of social construction of gender, it is essential to understand the difference between sex

The Social Construction Of Rape Essay

1807 words - 8 pages Oftentimes, the things individuals take for granted as preexisting facts are merely the products of social construction, which exert tremendous impacts on belief and action. Men and women are socially constructed categories inscribed by norms of masculinity and femininity that enables rape to occur. Catharine MacKinnon claims that rape is defined in a male perspective, which lacks the account of female experience. On the other hand, Sharon