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Neurointerventions and the LawRegulating Human Mental Capacity$
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Nicole A Vincent, Thomas Nadelhoffer, and Allan McCay

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780190651145

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190651145.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 27 February 2021

Is It Really Ethical to Prescribe Antiandrogens to Sex Offenders to Decrease Their Risk of Recidivism?

Is It Really Ethical to Prescribe Antiandrogens to Sex Offenders to Decrease Their Risk of Recidivism?

Chapter:
(p.270) 12 Is It Really Ethical to Prescribe Antiandrogens to Sex Offenders to Decrease Their Risk of Recidivism?
Source:
Neurointerventions and the Law
Author(s):

Christopher James Ryan

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190651145.003.0012

Many jurisdictions have laws that allow convicted sex offenders to be given antiandrogens as a component of sentencing. In other jurisdictions legislation facilitates the voluntary use of antilibidinal drugs in this population on the assumption that these compounds will decrease the rate of recidivism in sex offenders. This chapter begins with an overview of the current legal situation in various jurisdictions and provides examples of the assumptions of efficacy often made by academics and the judiciary. It then examines the theoretical basis of any hoped-for efficacy of antiandrogens in reducing recidivism before a critical examination of the actual empirical evidence for this, including a best-case scenario estimation of the how many offenders would need to take antiandrogens to prevent one from reoffending. The chapter also reviews the harms associated with the use of antiandrogen drugs (to the extent that these are known) before returning to the ethical question that forms the chapter’s title and concluding that the state should not authorize the compulsory or coerced used of antiandrogens, primarily because of the lack of evidence of efficacy of these substances.

Keywords:   sex offenses, paraphilias, pedophilia, rape, recurrence, androgen antagonists, medroxyprogesterone, cyproterone, jurisprudence, ethics

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