Priorities and the FDA

Diabetes is a diseases which especially impacts the lives of fat people. Tragically, the morality of fatness is frequently intertwined with diabetes treatment in ways that profoundly harm fat diabetics. Diabetes isn't a "fat" disease in the way its often framed. A fat person with diabetes isn't to blame for their disease and deserves to be treated with respect and compassion. We need to find a way to talk about the health issues facing fat people without suggesting that issues are a punishment for having an improper body. There are unique health concerns that impact virtually every segment of our population and fat people deserve to have our needs respected and addressed without weight shaming and stigmatization. Unfortunetly, its often clear that the only concern the medical establishment has concerning fat people is shame and stigmatization.

We learn today that the FDA was aware of a grave health risk with the diabetes drug Avandia last August but declined to issue any public warning until the study showing those risks was recently published. The study suggests that the drug may be responsible for heart attacks in "tens of thousands of people" and surely many deaths. Now, maybe this didn't warrent taking the drug off the market. I don't have the knowledge to comment on that. But this was information with potentially fatal consequences which patients and doctors should have been made available as soon as possible. The FDA claimed that they were reviewing the study themselves, but I cannot help but notice how their hesitent response here contrasts with the fast-tracking that is routinely done with diet drugs that yield marginal results at best. When it comes to drugging fat people so they might lose a couple pounds, time is of a virtue. When it comes to informing fat patients of deadly complications of drugs, suddenly patience is the virtue.

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