By Marguerita Cheng
Two decades after the Food & Drug Administration started receiving complaints that Ambien and other sleep aids made women taking them particularly groggy the next morning, and even might have been responsible for driving accidents, the agency accepted and responded to the scientific evidence behind the anecdotes. It turns out that women’s bodies simply metabolized the active ingredient, zolpidem, in all these sleep aids much more slowly than men did. In 2013, the FDA finally acted, slashing the recommended dosage of these medications in half for women.
Medicine isn’t the only field where attitudes that what is “good for the goose is good for the gander” still prevail. Equality is a wonderful goal, whether it’s a good night’s sleep or retirement security. How women reach those equal outcomes, however, may require taking a different pathway, whether