TOPIC: ARGUMENT188 - A new report suggests that men and women experience pain very differently from one another, and that doctors should consider these differences when prescribing pain medications. When researchers administered the same dosage of kappa opioids-a painkiller-to 28 men and 20 women who were having their wisdom teeth extracted, the women reported feeling much less pain than the men, and the easing of pain lasted considerably longer in women. This research suggests that kappa opioids should be prescribed for women whenever pain medication is required, whereas men should be given other kinds of pain medication. In addition, researchers should reevaluate the effects of all medications on men versus women.
WORDS: 447 TIME: 00:45:00 DATE: 2008-10-7 16:52:28
The author of this argument claims that kappa opioids have insignificant effect on reducing pain of male and all medications should be checked for gender difference. To justify this claim the arguer cites a research about 48 men and women who taking the operation of removing their wisdom teeth. This excerpt seems to be convincing and plausible; however after close scrutiny, I find it contains logical flaws in several critical respects, as the following discussion shows.
To begin with, the argument is based on the search of 48 people, which is not a statistically reliable sample. When samples are used to make general claims about a particular phenomenon, an author is responsible to assure its randomness and representativeness. In this argument, the author failed to take this rule into consideration, which make the conclusion unsubstantiated. Perhaps the 28 male patients in this study just suffered more sever toothache than their counterpart.
Additionally, the author assumes unwarrantedly that the medical effect of kappa opioids was the explanation for the difference response between the women and the men. Yet the only foundation for this causal relation is that they both take this type of painkiller after their wisdom teeth were extracted. It is entirely possible that other factors were instead reasons for the dissimilarity of their reports. First, the sense of pain is a subjective feeling and there is no common standard to weigh the pain. Secondly, even if the men did suffer more than the women, perhaps men's nerve and vessel around wisdom teeth are denser that women, which probably cause more pain. Since the author failed to consider and weigh these possibilities, the conclusion that kappa opioids has little effects on men is groundless.
Finally, even I concede that kappa opioids is a painkiller that cannot heal men's pain efficiently; the speaker still assumes too hastily that all medical treatment on men should be reevaluated. However, it is not the case. Common sense informs me that both male and female are similar in most of their biological features, and most medicine's functions are irrelative to gender. Should the author's claim reflect the fact, most of medicine we use should have insignificant impact on either men or women; however, this phenomenon is never observed.
To sum up, the author's conclusion about the medication effectiveness in relevant to gender difference is not well reasoned. To better support the conclusion, the author is expected to provide more information which can show that the research cited is believable and capable to reflect the fact. Furthermore, to make it logically acceptable, the arguer should also demonstrate that kappa opioids cannot reduce the pain of male in a view of medical science.