Bodies of Evidence: Depo-Provera and the Public Board of Inquiry

in Bodies of Knowledge

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780226443058
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226443072 | DOI:
Bodies of Evidence: Depo-Provera and the Public Board of Inquiry

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This chapter analyzes the 1983 U.S. Food and Drug Administration Board of Inquiry hearing held to determine whether Depo-Provera should be approved for use as a hormonal contraceptive in the United States. It highlights the role of women's health advocates in restructuring scientific inquiry and contraceptive regulation, and their frustration in not being able to use the individual testimonials of women who had been injected with Depo-Provera in the hearing. Their stories reveal the enormous complexity of regulating reproduction in the late twentieth century and help to explain why the women's health movement was not ultimately more successful in revolutionizing reproductive health care despite huge gains.

Keywords: Depo-Provera; Drug Administration Board; hormonal contraceptive; scientific inquiry; contraceptive regulation; women's health movement

Chapter.  11877 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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