The Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment

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Racism has had many consequences on society. People of color were considered inferior to the whites, and therefore, were treated with worse conditions than those of the whites. This included proper health care, and patients’ right to consent. Before slavery and segregation were abolished, many unethical medical experiments were conducted on people of color without their consent. In the 19th and 20th centuries, racial discrimination was more common than ever. Until the abolition of slavery, many African Americans were owned by whites. In America, racial discrimination against people of color caused society to be divided into two groups— the whites and the blacks. These groups were heavily defined; the whites and blacks were separated into different…show more content…
This experiment was conducted by the U.S. Public Health Service and Tuskegee University, a black college in Alabama, from 1932 to 1972. Black males, 399 with syphilis and 201 without, were tested on. The U.S. Public Health Service offered free health care to these men, and used them to study untreated syphilis, though they were not informed of this fact. These men were not aware of the fact that they were diagnosed with syphilis and how serious the disease is. Though penicillin became the treatment for syphilis in 1947, the doctors of this study chose not to cure the subjects, and they eventually all died. The U.S. Public Health Service took advantage of the subjects’ poverty, and in exchange for free health health care, they tested syphilis and refused to cure it, resulting in the death of many…show more content…
A prime example is James Marion Sims, often referred to as the “father of modern gynecology”, and his experiment on enslaved black women. Sims was finding a way to repair vesicovaginal fistula. This injury was often caused by childbirth, and caused urine to drip without control. Sims bought 14 slaves to conduct his experiment for the cure of this injury. He repeatedly cut their vaginas without anaesthesia, and believed that black women were able to endure pain better than white women due to their race. After finding a way to heal vesicovaginal fistula, Sims began to perform surgery on white women, but gave then anaesthesia to protect them from the pain. Sims is an example of the many slave owners who mistreated their slaves before slavery was abolished. He especially segregated the slaves from the whites by not giving anaesthesia to the slaves, claiming that they were able to withstand the pain. He then treated his own kind with full

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