Invisible Women - it's official! women are non-men
Helloooo GFPs, and welcome to this special bank holiday edition of the Invisible Women newsletter! Special in that it exists, there's nothing else special about it I'm afraid. Have a hot cross bun to make up for it, you know you want one.
Default male of the week
In Invisible Women I wrote about a "supposedly revolutionary artificial heart" that in 2013 was transplanted into its first patient. It was too big for women. "Its designers," I wrote, "are working on a smaller version, which is great, but it’s striking that, like other artificial hearts, the female version comes years after the default male one."
Well, it's now years after so let's revisit our heart shall we?
This new artificial heart responds to the patient - CNN — edition.cnn.com French company Carmat has developed a total artificial heart -- a device to replace the whole heart until a donor can be found.
So far so gender neutral. Women can be patients too, I've definitely seen that.
And, says the report, the "parts in contact with the patient's blood are made from material that's compatible with the human body, to reduce the risk of adverse reactions." Well that's great news, because I have it on good authority that women are fully human and have been for at least a decade! Pretty excited about this heart now.
The company has now received a CE marking which means the heart can be sold in the EU, and it has received authorisation to begin the approval process in the US. The heart should be on sale in Germany by the end of June. Humans rejoice!
"While it's suitable for most men, the current design is too big for most women."
Ah you knew it was coming didn't you? The female heart is still nowhere to be seen nearly a decade later. I mean it's fine, it's not like heart disease is the biggest killer of women in the US and Europe or anything is it.
Bonus default male of the week
Just because it's Bank Holiday Monday and I love you all so much, I couldn't resist including this gem from England Rugby
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It's official! Women are non-men. Perhaps that explains why when CNN says "the human body" it doesn't mean women.
Simone de Beauvoir eat your heart out.
Gender data gap of the week
Sticking with non-men playing sport, (A LIKELY STORY 🧐) this week came the revelation that while the FA mandates four doctors at every men's premier league match, only one doctor is required at women's matches. The doctors at the men's matches also have access to real time replays to help them spot concussions as they happen. The women's doctor does not. A gender data gap if ever there was one.
Meanwhile, the BBC proclaims a saliva test for concussion to be 94% accurate -- but only in men, because it hasn't been tested in women.
All this despite the fact that we know women are both more likely than men to experience concussion and suffer longer term consequences. Although it should be noted that there is a data gap here too: all the research on sport-induced early onset dementia has, so far, only been done in men.
This is pretty standard for sport science, which as I wrote in a 2019 article for The Telegraph has one of the worst data gaps of any research area. There is, however, a woman on a mission to change this, at least when it comes to women's rugby: Dr Elizabeth Williams, a researcher at Swansea University.
Her findings, which include significant sex differences in neck strength as well as in how and when players receive head injuries (in the male game it tends to occur to the person tackling, but this is very rare in the female game) should add urgency to the need to collect data in female athletes specifically, rather than applying research done in men to all humans. Female athletes need female-specific training based on female-specific research.
In case you missed it
have fun watching me stuff my face on catch-up
BBC Two - Great British Menu, Series 16, Scotland Judging — www.bbc.co.uk It is judges’ day, and only one chef can go through to represent Scotland.
Poppy pic of the week
here comes the sun-dog! 🥰🐾
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that's it! until next time my dear GFPs....xoxoxo