Medical Patient Modesty - a non-profit organization to improve patient modesty in medical settings

 
 
   
 

Why Women Should Avoid Male Doctors For Intimate Female Health Issues?

It is prudent for women to avoid male doctors for intimate female health issues. It’s always a risk to allow a male doctor to do intimate procedures such as colonoscopies, pelvic exams, pap smears, rectal exams, and breast exams on you. Countless male doctors have sexually abused female patients. A woman is at far greater risk of becoming a victim of sexual abuse at the hands of a male doctor or nurse especially gynecologist than she is from men in the general population she may encounter on the street. Check out Important Information About Sexual Abuse By Male Doctors. Also, check out tips about how women can prevent sexual abuse in medical settings.

We strongly encourage women who have a male gynecologist to switch to a female gynecologist. If your area does not have any female gynecologists, you should look into traveling to another town even if it takes over an hour.

Reasons To Avoid Male Doctors for Intimate Procedures:

1.) Countless male doctors have sexually abused female patients during intimate examinations. Remember that the nurse or assistant is present to "protect" the doctor and will often be on the doctor's side. There have been cases where female patients felt the male doctor went too far, but the nurse or assistant often testified that they saw nothing untoward and that the doctor was “just being thorough”. There was one case where everything happened so quickly that took the nurse off guard and she was not able to report what happened until the female patient left. There was one case where everything happened so quickly that took the nurse off guard and she was not able to report what happened until the female patient left. Check out Do Chaperones Really Protect Patients? Do not forget that many well-respected male doctors have sexually abused women.

2.) Male doctors are not morally above other men. Keep in mind that the male doctor could be enjoying the exam as though he was looking at pornography or a strip show, and then fantasizing about it later on after he leaves work. It is very normal for men to be aroused by seeing naked women and a male doctor is no different. No amount of training can take the "man" out of a male doctor. No matter how professional the male doctor is, there is no chance that he could stay pure in his mind 100 percent of the time. Look at all of the sexual misconduct cases involving male OB/GYNs in the news. Check out an article, Tide and Time about a doctor's account of an encounter with an attractive female patient. He always had a nurse present with him when he did a pelvic exam. This proves that a nurse cannot chaperone a doctor's mind. Also, check out an article about a medical student who had unexpected lustful thoughts when doing a cardiac exam on a female patient because her breasts were exposed.

3.) Male doctors could take pictures of women’s private parts secretly without anyone ever knowing. A number of male doctors have been involved in voyeurism. A well-respected male gynecologist, Dr. Levy secretly took pictures of his patients with a pen camera for a long time before he was arrested. He delivered many babies and helped a lot of women with female health problems. Dr. Levy got away with this unethical practice for many years. Think about how these women were further violated by having their nude images being viewed by teams of police personnel. A doctor in Britain used a spy watch to film himself sexually abusing patients. A male gynecologist, Dr. Paul Becton who was a deacon at a Baptist Church and the director of a pro-life pregnancy center in Arkansas took pictures of women’s private parts with his cell phone. He was very well respected in the community and many patients were shocked because they thought he was a wonderful doctor.

All women are encouraged to read this book, Women and Doctors by Dr. John Smith (The Atlantic Monthly Press, 1992), a former male gynecologist who courageously shared that after 24 years of medical education and clinical gynecological experience that men should not be gynecologists. “Male gynecologists, like all men, go through the kind of ‘attitude setting’ that occurs in the proverbial locker rooms while they are growing into manhood.” Dr. Smith, whose practice was in Colorado Springs, says that “It is common and acceptable among practicing gynecologists to speak about their patients' bodies, sexual behavior, or medical problems indiscriminately, in terms that are demeaning and reflect a lack of kindness and respect.” (p. 27) Becoming more explicit, he charges them with eroticizing the medical scene: “It is a rare male who is able to see women day in and day out, examine their bodies, hear details of their sex lives, and not only never have a lascivious thought or abuse that access but always remain clinical…” (p.29) He confesses that “I have had a colleague invite me to do an exam on one of his patients under the false guise of a consultation because ‘she has a body you won’t believe’.” “I have seen a physician walk out of an exam room and tell a hallway full of doctors and nurses about the disease his married patient had contracted as a result of an affair. I have seen more than one gynecologist walk into an operating room where another doctor’s patient was already asleep for surgery, lift up the sheet, admire the patient’s breasts, and continue his conversation without pause.” (p.27) Dr. Smith concluded dramatically: After twenty-four years of medical education and clinical gynecological experience, it is my opinion that males should not be gynecologists. The role properly belongs to women.” (p.29).

While it is true that some male doctors are very gentle and even more compassionate than some female doctors, keep in mind that many “gentle” and compassionate male doctors have sexually abused women. If you feel that your female gynecologist is too rough, just look for another female doctor or mid-level provider until you find one you are happy with.

Beware of male gynecologic oncologists too. Do not buy the explanation that they are different because they help with gynecologic cancers. They do a lot of intimate procedures on women like regular gynecologists.

Be prepared to cancel your appointment if your female doctor is not available for some reason. Make sure that you look closely at the patient paperwork and make sure you do not sign something that guarantees payment of "cancelled" appointments. Never accept a male doctor who may fill in for your female doctor. One lady who drove an hour for an appointment for a physical exam with a female doctor arrived at the doctor’s office discovered that her female doctor was out sick. The receptionist informed her that she could see a male doctor and she agreed for two reasons. First reason was because she thought that he would not really do anything intimate since she was not due for a pap smear. The second reason was because she had taken some time off work and did not want to take more time off work to reschedule the appointment to see the female doctor. It turned out that it was a big mistake because he pushed her into having breast exam, rectal exam, and pap smear. She felt so violated. She shared her concerns with the nurse who was present and she said that the male doctor always did thorough exams. It is very typical for a nurse to defend a doctor.

Beware that you could be required to sign a dual provider agreement if you see a female Nurse Practitioner in a male gynecologist’s office. Look at an example of a dual provider care policy in a practice with male gynecologist and female Nurse Practitioner. This means that a male doctor could end up being a part of your appointment.

Always make sure that you will have a female doctor or mid-level provider before you change into your gown even if your appointment was made with a female provider. A male doctor could fill in for a female provider at last minute without your knowledge.

** We are distributing stapled 12-page booklets to women about how they can protect themselves in medical settings and we are seeking volunteeers to help with distributing those booklets. We also need some financial support to pay for more booklets. You can see what the front cover of the booklet looks like by downloading this link. If you would like to volunteer to distribute booklets or support us financially, please



Sources:

Do Chaperones Really Protect Patients?

Male OB/Gyns in the News

Time and Tide

A routine heart exam. An unexpected problem.

Gentlemen Don’t Look Up Ladies’ Skirts

Women and Doctors By Dr. John Smith

 


 
     
   
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