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Subject:  Re: Disorders Made To Order???? Date:  11/23/2002  12:43 PM
Author:  urche Number:  286 of 898

Thisguyntx wrote :
Could certain drugs be mis-prescribed? Yes, I think so. Do we have a conspiracy here? I think not.

This is a very interesting notion introduced in the long post by Delighted. I don't doubt that even many more conditions can be "described" by asking questions in a survey and even giving labels and acronyms, at which point they become elgibile for consideration in the media lexicon and the the DSM publication.

The next step, treatment, is where it becomes potentially perverse, as drug companies and alternative medical practicioners step up to the soap box to hawk their wares and ways to "treat" the condition. Just because we can describe and label a human condition does not mean we should feel compelled to start treating it. Sometimes we are simply dealing with the fringes of human normalcy, those beyond 1 0r 2 standard deviations from the poorly defined norm, the outliers that by definition populate the human race. Just because a person is not functionning optimally in our society, does not make it society's duty to uplift that person to "normal" functioning.

I acknowledge that it would be nice to know how to affect a variety of behaviors by effective treatments---just as we benefit as a society from treatments for depression and mania, for examples. But, first we need to make sure that these treatments are not being imposed indiscriminately on people who are not necessarily desiring to change. Next, we need to demand a high level of proof from drug and alternative treatment methods that they are indeed effective. Finally, we as a society are going to need to reckon with the societal cost of allowing indiscriminate proliferation of conditions that "need" treatment.

At some point we will be faced with tough decisions about cost-effectiveness and the ethics of this trend.


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