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Gaceta Sanitaria

Print version ISSN 0213-9111


RODRIGUEZ-SOZA, Carolina  and  RUIZ-CANTERO, María Teresa. Gender blindness in medical textbooks: the case of leukemias. Gac Sanit [online]. 2022, vol.36, n.4, pp.333-344.  Epub Dec 19, 2022. ISSN 0213-9111.


To analyse the existence of sex-differences in the content on leukemias in the Haematology and Internal Medicine textbooks recommended in the Medical Degrees, 2019-2020, by comparison with the sex-differences recognized in the scientific literature.


Manifest content analysis of the content of chapters on leukemias in the books on hematology and internal medicine, clinical haematology and haematology undergraduate. Analysis categories: epidemiology, etiopathogenesis, diagnosis, treatment and prognosis of leukemias.


Epidemiological information from the revised books has a greater consideration of sex differences in incidence and prognosis but does not contain data on mortality and survival. Etiopathogenesis is described in all books as the same physiological process for both sexes and no differences in the presentation of symptoms are described in any book. Three books describe a unique treatment that is assumed equal for both sexes; two books mention the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia in pregnant women and one in chronic myeloid leukemia. No book mentions sex-differences in pharmacokinetics, efficacy, or treatment toxicity, although there is greater evidence on unequal behavior between the sexes.


The contents of sex and gender differences in the leukemia chapters analyzed are insufficient compared to the evidence in the scientific literature today. Hematology textbooks might increase their scientific quality in future editions, including knowledge of sex-gender interaction in the sections of epidemiology, etiology, pathogenesis, diagnosis, treatment, prognosis, and consequences of leukemias, which will contribute to better professional practices, more efficient and equitable.

Keywords : Leukemia; Sex-differences; Gender; Biases; Medical education.

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