For citation purposes: Kowalcek I. Sex and gender in reproductive medicine. OA Women's Health 2013 Apr 01;1(1):1.

Short communication

Ethics & Psycho-Social Issues

Sex and gender in reproductive medicine

I Kowalcek

Authors affiliations

Medical University of Schleswig Holstein, Campus Lübeck, Brahmsstraße 10, 23556 Lübeck

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This paper focuses on sex and gender in reproductive medicine.

Short Communication

The use of the sex-gender discourse in reproductive medicine has brought about awareness of the distinctive cultural and social attributes. Patients’ experiences also play a significant role in the discussion about the use and development of reproductive techniques. The term ‘in vitro’ fertilization focuses mainly on the somatic course of events. The wish to remain childless is usually determined by change of values, individualization, the incompatibility of uniting child and job, single status as mother, the relegation of having a child to a later time in the future and then, finally, total renouncement. Medical prerequisites are laid down and social constructions coordinated in respect of the reproductive potential of the woman and her age. Differentiated models should become a topic of discussion concerning gender-specific aspects of reproductive medical concepts, both in thought and in deed and should be introduced to the empirical form of research in future studies.


There should be an introduction of differentiated models into discussions about gender-specific aspects of reproductive medical concepts. Further studies are required to increase our knowledge and improve on the current methods we have.

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