Racial disparities exist, but what causes them can be complicated. Harvard anthropology student Jason Silverstein says it has to do with a lack of empathy. Host Michel Michel Martin talks with Silverstein about a Slate article he wrote titled, ‘I Don’t Feel Your Pain.’
It is hotly debated about whether or not J. Marion Sims the father of American Gynecology used any kind of anesthesia (some forms were in fact available) with the enslaved women on which he experimented. Though he performed numerous surgeries in hopes of fixing their fistulas and perfecting the medical tools used to complete the task (notably, his silver sutures) they may not have received anesthesia. On the other hand, it is also debated about whether or not he may have willfully addicted them to opium in order to maintain Betsey, Anarcha and Lucy as docile subjects.
When I was in numerous hospitals, the pain I experienced was disregarded by medical staff. That gauge, 1-10 was not reliable information for me or them. I was told that I was having cramps at one hospital, that I had a UTI at another when in fact, an organ of mine was suffocating on its own blood vessels. Dying.