Monday, April 24, 2006

PT-141 Chemical Coercian: New Meds Change Your Mind About Sex

Some of you wondered what the heck I was talking about when blogging about the fututre of cyborgs (a combination of computer or mechanical device and man) and chemical enhancements. Already the hormone Ocytocin (in its synthetic form Pitocin) is used for bonding or feel-good attachment. Others like Growth Hormone, Insulin, Steroids, Erythropoitin are used to enhance the bodies ability to grow, repair, manage blood sugar, deal with inflammation, enhance the bloods ability to carry oxygen, etc.

My point? These substances are not just used for medical diagnosed deficiencies now (and that's a VERY broad notion indeed) but to increase ability, enhance experience--become "super" human.

I can sense your doubt. Here are just two examples: Athletes are the first to morph themselves into something super human for the benefit of sport. Lovers everywhere who find one encounter per day, simply not enough (they believe that "too much of a good thing is a good thing"), take Viagra or Cialis to become super human.

When Oxytocin came to market as an atomized spray, my anxiety rose. The dubious uses for this are many. Instead of nasty stinky perfume blasted in your face at a store, this hormone could be released and cause you to want to bond to that Prada handbag--"must have handbag, must have handbag" your subconscious chants.

Now a potentially harmful medication, PT-141, is being studied. An aphrodisiac that causes recipients to feel aroused and ready not by manipulating the vascular system to send blood to the nether regions but by manipulating brain chemistry--turning you on. Like a button.

Can you imagine? "Not tonight dear." And the husband responds with a spraying this drug in your face, "Yes tonight and you're gonna like it too!"

Here is the future: clubs with "hormone modifiers" kinda like Smoothie King is now. Want to feel sexy? Spray here. Want to get the most of this workout? Spray here. Want to feel more bonding love with the little cretin going through Tormenting Threes? Spray here. Want to drop ten pounds the easy way? Spray here. Want to make it through the tough week at work? Spray here.

Sounds good right? A little bit o' this, a little bit o' that and medical doctors are the modern witch doctors--although I think that these drugs will see their most generous usage once out of patent and made for OTC use. Anyway, these meds will enhance, extend and excite lives. Woo hoo!

And then people will believe, as at least 50% of the population already does, that their bodies, just as they are, are inadequate. They are inadequate. If a little is good, a lot is better. Since all experience will be heightened (doctors will say at normal levels--they choose the normals afterall and when you fall outside the normal levels you'll get the med) regular life will feel like a windless day at sea: you're on the ocean but man it is soooooo boring.

Is anyone slowing down and considering the ramifications here? Who makes these decisions about who and what is normal? How much better is enough? When is medication manipulation of the worst kind?

9 comments:

Chalmers said...
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Chalmers said...

Great post, sis!

It reminds me of a funny exchange I had with a former co-worker. It was a couple months after Amanda and I got married (June), and I had changed from PacifiCare to Aetna HMO that year, so it had been 6 months since I started with the new provider. I said to a co-worker, "Man, I need to choose a Primary Care Physician." "You mean you need to change PCPs?" "No, I haven't picked one since I changed to Aetna." "You don't have a PCP?!? How do you get your Prescriptions?" "Prescriptions? I don't have any." (Confused looks from both people...)

The situation now seems best reflected by the Blood Pressure thing a couple years ago. Basically overnight, millions of people went from "normal," to marginal and probably in need of a prescription to lower their BP. What no one seems to mention is that most high blood pressure drugs (to my knowledge) have to be taken forever, once you are on them. Once your BP drops into the new normal, you still have to take the drugs (I guess because your body adjusts to having that "crutch" in there?). In my opinion all of this is done to benefit Novartis and their ilk.

I may be over simplifying, I am certainly not a doctor, but I am a $ guy and this all smells of greed.

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