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Accepted Paper:

Quantifying illness: insights from gestational diabetes diagnostic renegotiations in British Columbia and Denmark  
Anne-Sophie Guernon (McGill University)

Short abstract:

What does it mean when gestational diabetes diagnostic guidelines change? How do geographical diagnostic specificities differentially dictate experience? This work presents a theoretical/comparative exploration of newly amended gestational diabetes diagnostic guidelines in Vancouver and Copenhagen.

Long abstract:

Medicine is a diagnostic science, so what does it mean when diagnostic guidelines change? What are the consequences of this recalibration of numbers and scales? This interdisciplinary work, combining literature from medical anthropology, STS, and public health, presents a theoretical and comparative exploration of new gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) diagnostic guidelines in British Columbia (Canada) and Denmark; simultaneously, amending their GDM screening and diagnostic protocols in the year 2024. Given the surprisingly non-unanimous and somewhat controversial nature of GDM diagnosis globally, this work explores the institutional/bureaucratic negotiations of diagnostic change and sheds light on the lived repercussions of diagnostic revision - focusing directly on ‘numbers in embodied worlds’ and ‘bodies in numerical worlds’, topics central to this panel. This work provides, thanks to literature analysis, an overview of the history of GDM diagnosis and the ways in which the diagnostic ‘schools’ have changed and also critically explores how shifting diagnosis calls for renegotiations of life in the (pregnant)body. Lastly, it provides a comparative overview and explanation of the revised GDM screening measures implemented, including insights, collected via virtual interviews, from policy-makers in charge of the diagnostic amendments in Vancouver and Copenhagen. Certainly, with the new and expanding testing strategies and diagnostic boundaries in these cities, diabetic experiences will be differentially created and worlds re-made. I aim to explore: How do geographical diagnostic specificities and institutional decision-making differentially dictate experience? This work will help foster a better understanding of the stakes of diagnosis from a historical, scientific, and phenomenological point-of-view.

Traditional Open Panel P353
Corporeal quantification: numerical negotiations of health and the body
  Session 2 Thursday 18 July, 2024, -