Sexual abuse under guise of health care presents barriers

Incidence of sexual abuse within health care is estimated to rival levels found within the church and other major institutions, but people who are sexually abused by doctors and other health care workers within the context of health care are faced with many unique barriers that are not present in other settings.  Some of the barriers include difficulties distinguishing what constitutes sexual abuse, a decreased ability to prevent sexual abuse from occurring, and a lack of support and justice for instances when sexual abuse has taken place.

Recognizing sexual abuse
Recognizing sexual abuse within the context of health care can be difficult.  It can be difficult to distinguish between health care and sexual abuse when routine examinations involve genitals and other sexual areas of the body.  But it is the very nature of these exams that places doctors and other health care workers in a privileged and unique position to disguise sexual abuse as something else.  For example, doctors are able to perform exams such as vaginal/rectal/breast exams when they are medically unnecessary, and to then defend their actions by claiming they were being “thorough”, or that they were done for the woman’s own good.  And it can be very difficult to prove otherwise except in rare instances.  For example, Dr. Stanley Chung was brought before the College of Physicians and Surgeons on allegations of frequent and unnecessary rectal and vaginal exams on women, some of whom were virgins.

It can also be difficult to determine when the line from appropriate behavior to inappropriate behavior during an examination has been crossed, especially if the sexual act is subtle.  For instance when the doctor’s hand brushes against a breast as if by accident, or the doctor’s fingers linger a bit too long inside the vagina during a bimanual exam.  In these instances the woman only has her hunches and instincts to support her suspicions.  In other cases it is fairly obvious when the line has been crossed, such as instances where it is obvious that exams are not medically necessary.  For example, a commenter on this site stated: “When I was thirteen my mom suspected I might have a kidney infection and took me in to see a urologist. He told me to cross my arms over my head, held my arms down, removed the paper shield and did a breast exam on me while I was fighting against him.” April 4, 2013 at 4:23 pm Clearly a thirteen year old girl would be considered as not being at risk of breast cancer. Another example is the court case of Wasserman versus Ms. Gugel:

Ms. Gugel alleges the doctor took her into an examination room and sexually assaulted her upon the conclusion of his “consultation only” appointment.  The doctor claims the alleged sexual assault was actually part of a legitimate medical examination, even though he had already examined her the previous day . . .  The doctor also contends the alleged sexual assault was part of a legitimate examination despite his not wearing examination gloves, his smelling his finger after using it to touch Ms. Gugel’s vulva and inserting it into her vagina, and his subsequent sexually harassing phone calls to Ms. Gugel, which were recorded.

Prevention
Preventing sexual abuse within the context of health care can be difficult.  Many women have the reasonable expectation they will be able to trust their health care providers and sexual abuse is not something that is likely to be on a woman’s radar.  However, even when distrust of a health care provider is present, the lack of informed consent involving intimate examinations provides little opportunity for a woman to avoid them.  In fact, the current situation in women’s health allows for coercion to the point of bullying and the withholding of medications and other health services when women wish to decline pelvic exams/pap tests/STD testing.  The power imbalance that is already present in the doctor/patient relationship becomes even more pronounced when a woman feels pressured into invasive exams or is unaware she has the right to say ‘no’, and the opportunity to prevent sexual abuse becomes extremely remote.  In addition, the coercion that is the norm in women’s health care allows increased opportunity for predatory behavior and sexual abuse on the part of doctors and other health care providers.

Lack of support and justice
The effects from having been sexually abused by someone in a position of trust can be devastating.  Dr. Gerald Monk, a professor at San Diego State University, states “Patients can feel especially violated in the context of health care. Not only do patients anticipate being safe and secure, they expect to be healed. Following an adverse medical event, a patient may experience a lifetime of heartbreaking anguish and suffering.”  Juan Mendez  in his work with the Human Rights Association compares some unnecessary medical procedures to torture and states, “medical care that causes severe suffering for no justifiable reason can be considered cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, and if there is state involvement and specific intent, it is torture.

Some women who have been sexually abused by a doctor are not even sure what to call it, and in fact sexual abuse when committed by doctors is assigned special terminology and renamed as “medical misconduct”.  When some women attempt to seek help they are often met with a white wall of silence and discover that denial and persistent altercation of the facts are prevalent.  Sanda Rogers, University of Ontario law faculty, in her discussion of failed promise of reform regarding sexual abuse by health care professionals, states: “Patients report abuse. The evidence is there, as is the evidence that abuse is seriously under reported. The legislation provides the health disciplines with the tools necessary to respond to the abuse perpetrated by some members. Instead, the College of Physicians and Surgeons and other Colleges, have failed to ensure that complainants are provided with the support necessary to assist them to survive the process of complaint, investigation and hearing. The drop off rate on complaints by the CPSO, and by other Colleges, is such that almost no complaints and few complaints of sexual misconduct and abuse proceed to a full hearing. Each stage of the process favors the professional and undermines the complainant.”  Sanda also states that complainants  who were interviewed by the College members found the complaint process “an amplification of an already traumatic experience“.

As a result, doctors and other health care providers are often left free to continue abusing for years even after complaints against them are made. Dr. Alan Cockeram and Dr. George Doodnaught are just two examples of cases where many women filed complaints and they were ignored.

Sexual abuse under the guise of health care presents many barriers and can have devastating effects.  Sanda states that “Abuse in the guise of care, enabled by professional status, access and patient vulnerability and dependency, is an insidious and terrible breach of trust and an unconscionable and violent abuse of power and authority“.  Women are often placed in positions where they are vulnerable and left with limited resources to protect themselves from sexual abuse by health care providers.  The women who have been abused and who find the courage to complain are often led through a process that often only fails them.  In addition, women who have been faced with such experiences are left in a place where health care can be viewed as a threat to their personal safety and psychological stability.  In other words, these women are left to cope in a society where health care, for them, does not exist.

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About forwomenseyesonly

Hi. My name is Sue and I am interested in promoting holistic and respectful health care.
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342 Responses to Sexual abuse under guise of health care presents barriers

  1. cindy knoke says:

    Your blog is SO important!! Kudos to you~

  2. Chrissy (UK) says:

    Sue,
    Another excellent article. I agree that recognizing abuse within the context of healthcare is fraught with difficulty, particularly as the system is loaded in favour of doctors. Take the situation here in the UK; our GPs have financial incentives in place to screen a sizeable percentage of their female patients with regard to cervical screening. If a woman is ‘overdue’ for a smear test and attends her doctor’s surgery for an unrelated problem, she stands a good chance of being ambushed in an opportunistic attempt to get her to screen there and then. Not only does this negate informed consent, the woman is coerced into removing her underwear and submitting to an extremely intimate examination that she is not prepared for. For a sexual predator this presents many ‘legitimate’ opportunities to coerce women into intimate examinations. The very same system that encourages these opportunistic screenings also protects these doctors if the woman complains. After all, he was only ‘following guidelines’.

    • Thank you Chrissy. Yes, it provides perfect opportunity for sexual predators, and they are well protected by the system as it currently is. What I find interesting is how in most cases where the futility and lack of evidence to support paps and vaginal exams is highlighted, it is done so by women. For example, the “bimanual” exam is futile, and the evidence proves that no abnormality has ever been accurately detected by inserting fingers into a woman’s vagina. So a bimanual exam is pointless, but this “exam” is done as a matter of routine: http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/pdfplus/10.1089/jwh.2010.2349 It is mainly the women in medicine, law, and academia who are attempting to educate the public regarding the futility and lack of evidence to support much of what is being done to women in the name of “health care”. Cervical cancer is rare, but women are not being told this simple fact. Many women are not even being told why a pap smear is done in the first place.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for writing this. today woman are expected to agree to pap smears and other gyn care. I think one of the resons why doctors think it is okay to force this on woman is beacuse of the way doctors are being taught not to see these exams as sexuall or intamte. to many woman these exams are sexuall and unacceptable. It scares me how much control doctors are given. for example every time a woman goes to a doctor for any thing even a none gyn related problem. it is a ruten question hear in the US to ask. When was your last pap smear? the question itself implys we were expected to have had one nad they want a date to recodr.Like it is a requerment to have them. I have always hated that. I dont want to have pap esre smears. I was yelled at by a nurse once for admiting That at 24 I had not had one. she belittled me and yelled saying that it was not good and woman are indanger because we have preiod ands are bodys are so complex. Itw as like she felt she had a right to tell me not having pap smears was wrong and bad. I hope that one day this wille be in the news and that there will be a law to protect woman that chosise not to have this intamate screening. I do not understand why men are given a chios with there screnning. I have never heard a doctor refusea man unrelated care until they complyed.

    • Al says:

      It was totally unacceptable behaviour of that nurse to yell at you, for whatever reason. Especially about cancer screening (which is OPTIONAL and ELECTIVE). And especially after it has been proven by researchers that pap smears before age of 30 are 100% HARMFUL (after age of 30 they become 95% harmful, because 95% of women over 30 are HPV-negative and cannot possibly benefit from pap smears. Agreeing to pap smears only puts them in danger of painful over-diagnosis and over-treatment).

    • “doctors are being taught not to see these exams as sexuall or intamte. to many woman these exams are sexuall and unacceptable”

      This is absolutely true! While the system is rife with opportunity for doctors to deliberately abuse (and laws that exempt medical exams from rape definitions don’t help!), there are probably more situations where a woman legitimately feels sexually violated, but the care provider did not have any sexual intent. When this happens is often when a woman has refused an intimate exam, but then is either bullied into submitting, or is physically restrained and forced to submit. As a birth doula, I’ve seen both situations happen. The doctors feel justified in what they are doing because “its for the good of the baby/woman.” But they absolutely need to be trained that women should be treated as autonomous individuals, and coerced consent is NOT consent, it is assault.

  4. Kleigh says:

    Thank you for writing this. there really needs to be a law put into place to protect woman who do not wish to have intamate screening. there should never be any hassasment or refused care on the basses that a unrelated intamte exam was refused. it scares me how much power doctors have over woman. for example that question that is asked to all woman that go to a doctor for any reson is “when was your last pap smear.” this inplys woman were expected to have had on and they demande a date to record. that question underminds informed concent.

    • Kleigh I so agree with you! Informed consent is a basic human right but it is routinely withheld in women’s health care. If you were to take a vaginal exam out of the context of a medical setting it becomes easier to see how ludicrous it is. Say a woman is in her own home and a doctor making a house call is telling her she cannot have birth control pills until she agrees to remove her clothing, spread her legs, and allow him to insert fingers and a speculum into her vagina. When you imagine the woman in her home, lying on a couch or a bed, and she is being coerced into allowing the man to insert fingers and objects into her vagina – then it is easier to see it for what it is. The fact that a pelvic exam is not medically indicated for birth control pills is well known – yet doctors continue to withhold them until women submit to vaginal exams.

  5. This was a very well written article. As you know, we have tips about how women can prevent sexual abuse at http://www.sexualmisconductbydoctors.com/femaletips.aspx. I would like to put a link to this article on our links page. I think everyone should read this article.

    • I wanted to also mention that women can easily be sexually abused once they are put under anesthesia even if they had knee or hand surgery because many medical facilities demand that they be nude.

    • Thank you Patient Modesty for the nice compliment, and thank you also for providing the link to excellent tips on how to prevent sexual abuse. I’m glad to have an opportunity to tell you that I admired your article titled “Modesty During Hysterectomy”, and appreciated how it revealed some very interesting and important information, such as in this excerpt from the article:

      Patients are often given Versed or other sedatives prior to entering the Operating Room to alleviate stress and help you to relax. While Versed is an anti-anxiety medication, it also has a powerful amnesia effect. Versed is also known as a date-rape drug. It is used to make a person compliant and induces conscious sedation. It causes a person to not remember. It’s a dangerous drug which is not in the best interest of patients. Many patients will not be able to remember anything while under its influence. If you’re given Versed prior to being brought into the Operating Room, you will likely not remember who is in the room, being placed on the OR table or being prepared for anesthesia. So while the doctor may say you will be “awake,” be sure to clarify what that means. Further, once surgery is over, you will likely be give few more doses of Versed, again that means you will likely not remember being in the PACU.

      One hysterectomy patient who spoke up that she did not want any male medical personnel present was given Versed so she could not advocate for herself. She ended up with a male anesthesiologist, a male assistant, and a male circulating nurse against her wishes. You are no longer able to advocate for yourself once you are given Versed because it causes you to have a powerful amnesia effect. Versed gives medical personnel the opportunities to do many things without your consent. Versed also legally invalidates any patient testimony regarding their treatment.
      http://patientmodesty.org/hysterectomymodesty.aspx

      The fact that being given Versed will render any complaint made by the patient after surgery invalid in a court of law is vital to know – before going into surgery. If there is sexual abuse at any time after being given Versed, the woman will not be able to do anything about it. That is so disturbing.

      • Thank you for your positive feedback on the hysterectomy article! I could not stay silent on this subject because a lady contacted us about her horrible experience when she had a hysterectomy in Utah. I am planning on writing additional articles in the future. I look forward to additional articles you will write in the future as well.

  6. Diane (US) says:

    Thank you for this article. It’s important to note that one of the key components of the definition of abuse is being touched/encroached upon against one’s consent (or without the ability to consent) and this definitely happens in the medical profession.

    Case in point: this one involves a male patient but it is a good example. This man was vehemently opposed to having a rectal exam in the ER. Instead of respecting that, they held him down and gave him drugs so they could perform the exam…and then had him arrested for “assaulting” a doctor. The dichotomy there is that they claimed he was not in the right state of mind to agree or refuse the exam, but that he WAS in the right state of mind to assault the doctor!

    Unfortunately a jury decided that this was not sexual assault – something I feel is wrong.

    http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/01/16/forced-rectal-exam-stirs-ethics-questions/
    http://www.clinicalcorrelations.org/?p=687

    • This was a horrible case. There was actually no reason for a rectal examination to be done on this man. I am really disappointed that the man lost his case. If I had been on the jury, I would have worked hard to convince other jury members that this was in fact wrong. Tort law is supposed to protect a patient from non-consensual exams and touching.

  7. OverItAll says:

    Sue, I so love your blog!! I think most women who find your blog are shocked into backing up their doctors until they realize what you’re saying is true. I’ve got a few stories that’ll make your stand up, gray and fall out. I really thought I was the only one who thought the OBGYN field was a joke. Glad to know my PTSD from past experiences aren’t all “in my head”.

    • OverItAll thank you. It’s validating to discover you are not alone (far from it) in recognizing or experiencing harmful and trauma inducing medical practices. I’m glad you know the PTSD from past experiences aren’t all in your head and it’s sad and awful that you would have been led to think that in the first place.

  8. To Quote A Physician! says:

    Hi,
    Great post!
    Your comments about the “white wall of silence” and the link to Sanda Roger’s material were very revealing and her analysis of the issue was excellent in pointing to how the deck is stacked against patients and strongly protective of physicians.

    I found a thoughtful piece written by a physician a few years ago that seems to echo your general point. The article is titled “Stop Medical Malpractice: The White Coat Wall of Silence”,

    Michael Kirsch, MD states:
    “… my friend LG correctly points out that we physicians are not effective or serious at holding our members accountable. Sure, every state has a medical board, but we all know how egregious an offense must be to result in a serious professional sanction. It is not part of medical culture to identify colleagues who have demonstrated competency lapses, committed a negligent act or may be impaired. Recall the adage, ‘friends don’t let friends drive drunk’. Physicians don’t turn in colleagues who may be in need of remediation and rehabilitation, except in extreme circumstances.” The full article and subsequent discussion can be found at:

    http://mdwhistleblower.blogspot.com/2010/08/stop-medical-malpractice-white-coat.html

    Like the physician quoted in your article “The Other Side of the Speculum”, this open and honest comment by a physician acknowledges a problem that is usually denied by the dominant medical culture. As Dr. Kirsch’s blog suggests, the “white wall” culture represents a problem that needs to be addressed, not denied.

    • Name withheld says:

      This is very concerning. I believe thwt I was sexually assaulted by a surgeon during an examination. He was not the surgeon who performed my procedure. They are not even in the same practice. But are members of an elite group of specialists. I was going to report the incident to my real surgeon but I am now afraid that he will not support me. How should I approach it with him? Honestly I would rather speak to the PA in the practice about it but I do not know if my appointment is with the surgeon or the PA. To be honest, I wonder if the surgeon will think I am crazy and dismiss me from his practice. I should point out that I once sued an employer for sexual harassment. During the process, they called my character into question and distorted many things. I was victimized in a whole new way. I felt like I was portrayed as asking for it or deserving of it. So you know the saying, once bitten twice shy.

  9. One of Medical Patient Modesty’s goals is to educate patients about how to have as much modesty as possible for surgeries. There is no reason for underwear to be removed for many surgeries that do not involve the genitals. It is important for patients to know what body parts will be exposed for each surgery so they can make a request for all same gender team if necessary.

    Please take a look at an article I just put up about modesty concerns during gallbladder removal surgery. It is possible to wear underwear and shorts (as long as there is no metal) for this type of surgery. There is no need to have an urinary catheter inserted for this surgery since it only takes about an hour. I also included a link about gallbladder surgery alternatives that people can check out before they consent to surgery.

    If a male patient is allowed to keep his shorts and/ or underwear on for this type of surgery, there would be no modesty concerns since only his chest and belly would have to be exposed. Male patients still need to take precautions to make sure that their underwear and shorts are not removed and that urinary catheter is not inserted.

    Unfortunately, it is impossible for a female patient to wear a bra to cover her breasts for the surgery since gallbladder is located so close to the breasts. A female patient who does not want any men to see her breasts will need to select a female general surgeon, a female anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist, female scrub technicians, and female nurses.

    As many of you may know, female surgeons are much harder to find than female gynecologists. You usually can find several female general surgeons in big cities. This is a big challenge for women who may live 200 miles or more away from a big city. A lady may have to drive a long distance, but it is worth it.

    Too many women have been sexually abused by male doctors or nurses while they were under anesthesia. Look at this terrible case for example: http://news.nationalpost.com/2013/05/07/people-bite-down-under-sedation-says-defence-witness-in-trial-of-doctor-charged-with-forcing-oral-sex-on-patients/.

    • Patient Modesty thank you linking this excellent article. I think many women (and men) are unaware of the dangers they face when they are put under anesthesia. Your site has potential to help so many people to prevent sexual abuse from occurring, and prevention is key because once abuse has already occurred it is virtually impossible to prove/obtain justice. You have probably already seen this article but if not you will most likely find it interesting. Also if you click on the home page after reading about the “love surgeon” there is information regarding the white wall of silence: http://www.patient-safety.com/burt.htm

      • Thank you for the link!! I actually had not seen this article.

        Look at some very important sentences in the article:

        The private investigator was able to persuade her that now that she was retired, her career could not be effected by speaking. So she finally spoke.

        In other words, she and other nurses allowed this to go on for decades in order to preserve their careers.

        This is exactly why a nurse often does not protect a patient.

        Misty

  10. Thank you for writing this blog. I am so glad that I stumbled upon it. I have shared a link to your blog on my Facebook Page. I am 63 years old… I wished I had known these facts 45 years ago! (Gee…writing that made me reflect on how old I am! LOL) When I was 18 I had my first pelvic exam– I nearly went through the roof! It was the most painful experience I have ever had in my life! Every female in our family and relation has either overdue menstrual cycles or cycles that never quit! The doctor’s manner towards me was horrific and his exam was brutal. I think we have to be conscious of the fact always, that doctors are human beings and not gods or goddesses.We have a right to ask questions; we have a right to say “No” to a procedure. Thank you for the knowledge that you are providing.

    • Johannisthinking, unfortunately many women are not aware they have the right to say “no thank you” to any and all procedures they do not want to have. In my opinion it is very unethical of doctors to withhold informed consent regarding penetrative exams, or any exams. It is this type of unethical behavior on the part of some doctors that can result in so much suffering. Thank you very much for your kind words and for linking me on your Facebook Page. I wish you had known these facts 45 years ago too.

  11. I wanted to let you all know that one lady who had acid reflux avoided an unnecessary colonoscopy because she changed her diet at the encouragement of a friend at http://patientmodesty.org/acidreflux.aspx. Too many women have been sexually abused when they undergo colonoscopies by male doctors.

  12. I have written a new article about Versed and Conscious Sedation at http://patientmodesty.org/versed.aspx.

    Most people have no idea what Versed is. Medical professionals do not tell patients the truth about Versed. This drug has a powerful amnesiac effect. This is perfect for sexual predators in medical settings.

    • Misty I did not know that the drug Versed had such potential to cause so much harm to patients undergoing surgery or other procedures. It is very upsetting to read about doctors refusing to have Versed themselves while at the same time administering it to their patients, and often without even telling the patients they are being given Versed. I agree that the only way a woman (or man) can guarantee their wishes will be respected is to insist on having a family member or significant other to act as a chaperone, and to not leave the side of the person being put under sedation for surgery or other procedures. There have been many accounts from patients I have read about where their written and verbal requests were not respected, and also about patients being sexually assaulted while under sedation. It is also very upsetting to know that being given Versed will automatically invalidate the patient’s account of the assault and/or testimony in a court of law. Saying “no” to Versed and insisting on a chaperone is the best way to guarantee safety during surgery.

      • Sue,

        Thank you so much for your positive feedback! No one in my family actually knew what Versed was until I educated them about it. I decided to do research on Versed after I got a terrible case from a woman who had hysterectomy who had requested an all female team. Look at the case of Maggie from Utah (http://www.patientmodesty.org/Case.aspx?GID=1). She made it clear that she did not want any males to be involved in her surgery. A male anesthesiologist gave her Versed so she could no longer speak up. I wish that her husband could have stayed with her the whole time to protect her.

        I also wrote an article about how hysterectomies are often unnecessary at http://patientmodesty.org/unnecessaryhysterectomy.aspx. I am very concerned about the high rates of hysterectomies in the United States.

        Misty

  13. We also have a new article about colonoscopy at http://patientmodesty.org/colonoscopymodesty.aspx. If a woman must have a colonoscopy, she should select a female doctor. Some male doctors have sexually abused women they did colonoscopies on.

    • Misty, you have been doing wonderful work and posting such great articles. In addition to the ones you have linked here, this one is also much appreciated: http://patientprivacyreview.blogspot.ca/2012/03/same-gender-maternity-care-by-misty.html This excerpt from your article is so sad and so true: “All too often families have their wishes for modesty violated as they gave birth. The birth of your child should be a joyful time and it is tragic how violations of modesty have made birth experiences traumatic.” I agree it should be a joyful time and don’t understand why a woman is expected to tolerate groups of strangers staring at her in her most intimate moments. A woman in a different setting would not be expected to tolerate groups of strangers watch her lying on her back, naked and with legs spread apart. Her vagina being put on display for all to see feels the same regardless of the setting – just because it is called a “hospital” does not make it feel any less violating or dehumanizing.

      • Sue,

        Thank you for your positive feedback! Too many women have had horrible birthing experiences. One of my friends was supposed to have her baby with a midwife, but her baby was breech so she ended up having a C-Section. She got her wishes for a female doctor, but this doctor was very insensitive because she ignored my friends’ wishes that no medical students be present. Sadly, my friend decided to not have any more children because of this bad experience.

        Misty

  14. Sue,

    I am impressed with the research you’ve done for the articles you put up. I hope that many women will use the resources we have provided to protect themselves in medical settings. I would love to see if you could give some feedback on two articles I’ve written. They are just rough draft versions. I am sure I’ve probably missed some things.

    1.) What You Should Know About All-Female OB/GYN Practices? – http://patientmodesty.org/allfemalepractices.aspx. It was very difficult for me because I wanted to believe that you were always safe at an all female practice. My perspective really changed after a lady was sexually abused by a new male doctor that an all female ob/gyn practice hired. What did you think about the way I wrote the lady’s story?

    2.) Why Women Should Avoid Male Doctors For Intimate Female Health Issues – http://patientmodesty.org/avoidmaledocs.aspx. What do you think about the reasons I listed? Can you think of any other reasons?

    Do you see any typos in those articles? Do you have suggestions about how to improve those articles. Female doctors can be very insensitive. I strongly believe that there should always be informed patient consent for pap smears and other gynecological examinations. Women should never be forced to have a gynecological examination even by a female doctor. You can email me at http://www.patientmodesty.org/contact.aspx.

    Misty

    • Misty I am pleased you asked for my feedback on your two new articles. They are both very well written, flow nicely, and get your points across succinctly and comprehensively. The only typo I could find was in this sentence: “The practice consulted with their lawyers and decided that they would rather (to) compensate the lady for what happened rather than going to trial due to bad publicity they would get”, which I have bracketed. You may want to take another look as my own proofreading skills are not always topnotch. The links you have provided are very enlightening and support your points very well, you have done excellent research. There are many steps involved when ensuring your wishes are respected regarding same gender care and I am impressed with how you are working to cover them all. I like how you wrote the lady’s story as it is will surely help to forewarn others, and help to prevent this from happening to them.

      I completely agree with what you wrote: “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”. It seems with so many news articles about sexual assault by doctors that incidence is increasing, but it may in fact be due to more women coming forward with complaints. It is wonderful you are tackling this important topic and working to enlighten people and prevent harm.

      My only suggestion would be to include, somewhere in your article regarding same gender care, what you have written above: “I strongly believe that there should always be informed patient consent for pap smears and other gynecological examinations. Women should never be forced to have a gynecological examination even by a female doctor”. So true. Women should be offered informed consent, every time. This would help to prevent sexual abuse as well. Unfortunately, many women are not aware they have the right to say “no” to intimate exams.

  15. Sue,

    Thank you so much for your positive feedback! I added one important part to the article about why women should avoid male gynecologists (http://patientmodesty.org/avoidmaledocs.aspx). Many women are unaware that they may be required to sign a dual provider agreement in a practice with a male gynecologist and a female Nurse Practitioner. This means the male doctor could end up being part of her appointment with a female doctor. Many women sign forms without really reading them. Look at an example of dual provider agreement at http://patientmodesty.org/Duel%20Provider%20Patient%20Care%20Policy.pdf.

    Misty

  16. I really appreciate the excellent points that Zsuzsanna made on her blog about male gynecologists in response to Miranda who said that she had a rough female ob and a gentle male ob. Miranda preferred a male doctor, but she failed to realize that many “gentle” male doctors actually sexually abuse women.

    You can see her excellent points on March 2, 2010 at 7:36 PM: http://stevenandersonfamily.blogspot.com/2010/03/you-found-me-how.html

    Misty

    • Name withheld says:

      I went through this recently. The physician was very nice and gentle during my two exams with him. Even his touch was delicate. I was very confused – his “nice” manner cloaked his sexualizing of my exam, making it seem as if it was part of the routine care. But I had this sickening feeling in my stomach that I had been fondled. I have never felt like that after any exam with a physician male or female. I had to process through this with the help of a physician friend, a female friend who is a survivor, and volunteers from TELL and RAIIN.

  17. I am not sure how many of you have seen this article about a 14 year old virgin girl who was abused by a male doctor who did a pap smear on her at http://www.randombabble.com/2010/09/01/medical-autonomy-chronicles-the-virgin-pap-smear/. This is exactly why mothers need to be educated about why they should never take their daughters to male doctors for female health issues. I noticed that some women from forwomenseyesonly commented on this article. Check out an article, Tips for Parents of Teenagers at http://patientmodesty.org/teenagers.aspx.

  18. I wanted to let everyone know that there was a very disturbing picture of a female patient who was being prepped and positioned for surgery on the front of Outpatient Surgery magazine for June 2013 at http://outpatientsurgery.uberflip.com/i/134982/0. It looks like she is having hip surgery.

    Most doctors and nurses won’t even tell you how much you will be exposed while you are under anesthesia. I noticed that all of the 3 medical professionals in this picture are men. If you zoom in, you can see a little of the lady’s pubic hair. You also will notice that she has an urinary catheter. I wonder if she was asked for consent about the urinary catheter. It was probably unnecessary. It is very likely that one of those guys inserted the urinary catheter. This is sickening.

    This is why we need to educate people about how much modesty they could lose once they go under anesthesia and how to get maximum amount of modesty.

    What are your thoughts?

    Misty

    • Misty, that picture is very disturbing. From information I’ve gathered (online and from speaking with someone who knows a retired OR nurse), as soon as the patient is put under sedation they are stripped completely naked. Women’s legs are put into stirrups and all of their orifices are probed. The reason for inspecting all orifices is apparently to ensure the patient does not have a recording device hidden anywhere, due to potential litigation following adverse events. A flexible rectal temperature probe is inserted into the rectum and taped in place. Usually the patient is kept completely naked throughout the surgery, but apparently this is dependent upon the surgeon’s preference. The surgeon will take pictures of his/her work after the operation, and these pictures could include the entire naked body. The patient is usually not aware that pictures have been taken. The patient is then transferred to a stretcher and wheeled into the recovery room. The patient is not always covered up prior to being wheeled (still unconscious and naked) into a public hallway on the way to the recovery room. In the recovery room other people are able to see the naked patient, and the patient may or may not be covered up prior to being moved into the recovery room bed by a group of staff. The patient might also have students practice pelvic/rectal exams while she/he is unconscious. I have no references to support all of what I’ve just written, but I personally feel it is true.

      • Alex says:

        I’ve never heard about that! Is this with all surgery, or in relation to something specific? Also, what country is this? I remember hearing different things about having someone in the room with you (like family, not one of their friends). I don’t know why people trust doctors so much (doing that won’t make them more trustable- so there’s no reason for that to make you feel better). Another thing: People are always so curious what the doctor’s stance on something is (I can think of one for them to get into). It’s like giving them a chance to lie & use their certification to reinforce it. Another thing is that anytime they answer back, it’s like that’s always good enough for them. These doctors basically figure if they disregard something, they MAKE it unimportant. That and sick thrills, of course (not everything is complicated).

      • Alex I believe it is the case with all surgery involving anesthetic, and I was referring to Canada but it might be the same in other countries. I don’t, as I’ve said, have references to support all of what I wrote, but from my own experiences and in my own opinion I believe it to be true. Given how women are treated by some members of the medical community when they are fully aware and awake, I have no doubt there are some who take advantage of women in various ways when they are unconscious and helpless.
        I found this disturbing snippet on allnurses.com:
        “This is simple… read some of the posts on here. Post where a nurse talks about patients routinely being brought up from the ER naked for no reason. The post about the gyn calling a crowd over to look at a girls vagina only to talk about the way she shaves.(while she was under). A post about a doctor jiggling the body fat of a patient and singing a song about it while the nurses/techs all laughed.I also recall a post about a high school student watching a patient have a surgery as part of a program used to encourage students to enter the healthcare field . Thing is I’m CERTAIN the patient had no idea she was some kids “homework.” http://allnurses.com/operating-room-nursing/patient-modesty-concerns-196068-page18.html
        And you have probably already read about the practice of pelvic exams done without consent on unconscious women: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/health-and-fitness/time-to-end-pelvic-exams-done-without-consent/article4325965/

      • OverItAll says:

        Yes, any and all surgeries in hte US.

        When I had my foot surgery in 2010, one of the clauses on the consent form said “permission granted for any exams (including gynecological in case of females)…”

        I added my “rules” (below) on the consent/waiver and had ALL staff (even the janitors) sign, so I had proof they acknowledged it (I got a copy of this) AND had a VERY close friend who was present at all times watch the doctor.

        My rules: my entire body will remain in the clothes I wear (sweatshirt and sweatpants) due to the intended surgical area (right foot) being already exposed. No students, no unnecessary exams (pelvic, breast, abdomen, etc), no urinary catheters (if you get general anesthesia, you’ll have to have a cath. I did my surgery with a drip similar to an epidural that made me drowsy), etc. My patient advocate (name) will be present and at my side at all times, even in emergency, and she will be free to view the surgery at all times. (she was washed and dressed in scrubs as if prepped for an emergency)

        My friend actually watched the entire surgery. That’s how I found out the surgeon was so sloppy. I had to have a 2nd opinion dr give me an xray and that’s how I found out that the surgery was not only totally unnecessary but had jagged cuts ALL in and around the bones and the 2nd opinion dr also said he found evidence that my blood vessel had been “cut and repaired”! Needless to say, I’m still having nerve problems and pain in that foot.

        READ THE FINE PRINT. ADD WHAT YOU WANT TO THE WAIVER/CONSENT, GET *ALL* STAFF TO SIGN IT AND GET A COPY OF IT.

        And when I did MA, we practiced on the homeless who came into our clinic OR on patients anesthetized for unrelated reasons. We were BUSED in from our school to operating rooms for practice and this was 2009. I’m told they STILL do it to this day even with all the public knowing about this.

      • Alex says:

        Wait, how did it work out that there was no probing done on you (you said any and all surgeries in the US)? I remember that Red Asphalt movie in high school (where they said they probed people to check for drugs & internal bleeding), but I was told that didn’t actually happen & it was just to scare kids. Then I heard of them doing rectal exams to check for spinal injuries, internal bleeding, and broken bones (and it’s not viable for any of that, apparently abdominal MRIs & CT scans are). What’s the situation on all of that? Where can one research the things that go on (not just in surgery, but the hospital in general). I know there’s official & unofficial situations (ex: catherizing someone because of a perceived attitude or they just don’t like them- apparently if they’re drunk or high, also). Sometimes someone just engages in an action and makes up a story later (maybe that it never happened). Connecting the dots seems very popular with doctors (even when the things they say constitute iatrogenic attack & don’t actually work out medically, anyway).

        I’m also curious about emergency care situations & staying overnight with regard to patient advocacy. Someone’s not able to sign a form in that situation (or they might just consider them mentally unfit to make their own decisions- that happens just for arguing with them). They seem to have huge issues with non-blood relatives (not technically married, not close enough of a relation, no paperwork to prove it). The “visiting hours are over” line is another point. They try to get people to leave (or act like it’s their decision & you’re invading their home), and are now alone with a lower number of witnesses around.

        Just curious: That MA you mentioned is a master’s degree for nursing, right?

      • OverItAll says:

        MA is Medical Assistant. My school was very different from other MA courses. We were qualified to take the RN (registered nurse) state exam and become RNs instead of MA’s due to the course. MAs do NOT do exams, they’re supposed to do just blood pressure, passing tools and giving out meds (including injections). But my course was actually RN and taught by a NP (nurse-practitioner). I believe my school was doing this to see if they could get more qualified nurses in a shorter amount of time without compromising the necessary career qualifications because the state had a major decrease in nurses (we had over 40 patients per nurse at one point). The state was DESPERATE for nurses, so they created a “short cut”. We were in school or doing clinic 16+_ hours a day, 6-7 days a week (plus, at-home computer work where we practiced making appointments for patients around a group of dr’s lunches and “off time”).

        I was not probed/poked because: 1. I was awake, I just couldn’t feel below my waist, and only a screen similar to a CSection blocked my view (I could have easily asked them to remove it). 2. My friend was standing at the surgical area, she watched everything and said not one article of clothing was ever taken off or pulled down. 3. I had it writing, but just having it in writing doesn’t stop the doctors from the unrelated exams. BUT having someone present and/or being awake DOES prevent it.

        In emergency situations, the hospital will do what they feel is “necessary”. Like you said, there are legitimate situations where cath’s and exams are truly necessary. The “visiting hours” is a bit tricky. A partner (husband for example) is always allowed to stay overnight. Any argument over this should be sent to the head of the hospital. Again, you have to read the fine print. Always ask that your partner/advocate be dressed in scrubs ready for an emergency so they’ll be there. All patients have the right to an advocate, this can be a relative, friend, etc.

        Ro: Most schools are *supposed* to use volunteers (typically homeless) or the teachers for practice OR, more recently, the students practice on each other. There’s really no excuse to use anesthetized people undergoing unrelated surgeries. And you ALWAYS have the right to modify the consent forms, all forms.

      • Ro says:

        I was reading posts on a site where medical students were talking about performing other exams on those undergoing different surgeries, and apparently that has been illegalized in CA in the US. Students from CA were complaining about how they couldn’t get practice in for different types of exams because it had been outlawed and that hopefully the rest of the country wouldn’t follow suit (lawyers were being called a bunch of terrible things, but I thank those lawyers for defending the basic human rights of patients and I do hope that everywhere else follows suit if this is the case). I’m not sure where everything stands now, but I think the US is (hopefully) trying to put a stop to all of the unsolicited exams. Either way, it’s useful to know that you can make your own rules and have everyone at the practice sign it, as well as have someone of your choice in the room with you. However, I don’t understand how any sort of other procedures being performed while under anesthesia should be/is legal anywhere. It doesn’t make any sense and is clearly a violation. Furthermore, I feel like a lot of (you would be a better judge of this than me, considering you were a student) students probably feel a conflict of morals when performing unsolicited exams on patients. On that site where I was reading students’ comments, several of them said they felt terrible and wished they could just stick to performing and practicing exams on either the actors or willing patients. .

      • What state did your foot surgery happen in? That is wonderful you had your friend as an advocate. Did you have any resistance when you shared that your friend would be there for the surgery? Did you ever consider consulting with a medical malpractice lawyer? You had a good case because your friend witnessed what happened.

        Misty

      • OverItAll says:

        My surgery was in Florida. The doctor was totally ok with everything (having my friend there, me marking the contract, etc). But I think he was ok with it because my friend said she wanted to become a surgeon (she’s actually a law student! That’s how I found out about marking up the contract and getting everyone to sign it). I considered suing but ultimately decided against it. I have 3 very close lawyer friends who would have gone to court with me (pro bono too!) but I didn’t want to stay in FL anymore (I left FL within 6 months of surgery). I know my body, also. My body heals abnormally slow for no reason but it always goes back to normal eventually. I’m almost totally back to normal with just a scar. Winters are hard thought. I have arthritis (even at my under-25-age) and in the winter my foot “locks up” or a get a ping of numbness when I bend my toes up or under my foot or if I barely touch the scar. It’s nerve damage and scar tissue wrapped around the nerve. It won’t fully go away but the only options are more surgeries (to remove the scar tissue) or shots to shrink the scar tissue (but they cause permanent black/purple discoloration). I had a botched surgery, but I wanted to GTFO of that state

      • Alex says:

        What do you mean? I was making a point about the those exams or catherizations being used as a pretense or a weapon (at the minimum it not being viable). I appreciate the other answers, but I didn’t get what you meant when you said “like you said.”

      • Diane (US) says:

        One possible way to avoid this situation is to have surgery at a specialty hospital. When I had my tonsils out with general anesthesia, I went to an ear/nose/throat hospital. No students. Not a teaching hospital. No gyns anywhere on property, since you had to be an ENT to have privileges at that hospital. They only did surgeries above the neck. They gave me a pair of drawstring scrub pants for the surgery along with my gown and wrapped me neck to toe in another drape over that on the table – if anyone had wanted to get to my genitals they would have had a tough time doing so. So – no catheter, no rectal probe, and no unwanted exams. I was very lucky.

      • Alex says:

        Thanks, Diane. It really shouldn’t have to be this hard to not get attacked by people who are supposed to be countering a bad situation. It’s like a bodyguard snapping a protectee’s neck. It’s incompetence (as well as general antagonism) for someone in that situation to cause problems. I guess being a control-freak isn’t considered psychologically inadequate. I’ve heard people argue that you can just go to someone else, but you shouldn’t have to rely on luck to find that (or be liable to compensate for the doctor doing something they shouldn’t be doing in the first place). It’s like navigating a minefield (or covering all the bases in a legal cases- except in reverse).

        It really is like doctor’s presume that they assume proprietorship of someone’s health & they can apply influnce to it at their discretion. Just because their occupation involves the human body, doesn’t make the body their occupational property! Acting like they have a right to act as they please at work is like thinking that it’s okay for a cab driver to decide that they’ll drop you off wherever the hell they feel like (and that it’s not kidnapping because they use occupational means to do it).

  19. OverItAll,

    I am sorry that you are having problems now. I wanted to let you know that urinary catheterizations are actually often unnecessary for patients who have general anesthesia. You can find an article I wrote about urinary catheterizations at http://patientmodesty.org/catheterizations.aspx.

    Misty

    • OverItAll says:

      I didn’t know that, learn something new every day! I’ll definitely read your article when the baby’s down, thanks for enlightening me! We were told in MA it was a must, especially if it was a pelvic surgery (laparoscopy for endo, for example). However, if you can’t walk (from an epidural for example), you’ll need a cath, because the bladder can stop/slow labor. This happened to me in my homebirth and I had to be cath’d for a few minutes, but immediately had my baby afterwards (in only 3 pushes!). Though I had VP/VCI and possibly PA, so those may have been partly at fault also. Thanks again, Misty!

      • OverItAll says:

        Ugh. I’m so badly misinformed. Misty, excellent article (Honey took the baby for me). The medical field wants us just as dumb as patients I guess. Fabulous article. I’ll be sure to use it in my “informed refusal letter, if you don’t mind. This is just another reason I love sites/blogs like this!

  20. OverItAll says:

    Sorry, Alex!! I misread your post on my phone!!! I guess I’m more sleep-deprived than I thought. Anyways, you’re absolutely right that it’s used as a power trip. Amazing how one can belittle someone into being a “good little lamb”. I greatly apologize for the misunderstanding, off for bed finally. Maybe little boy will give me more than an hour of sleep tonight… :)

  21. EA says:

    I appreciate this article more than you know! I have been abused by male and female doctors/nurse practioners. I’m a lot more difficult to abuse now but I still get weak thinking of the things that were done – that I and others I trusted allowed. Not again!

    • Alex says:

      I agree! It would have been great if some people I was close to had heard these things in advance. Bodily autonomy isn’t exactly taught in school, and neither is real information (the risks & inaccuracies of a lot of things are completely omitted). I’m sorry to hear about whatever happened to you. Overall, any interface with sexual areas as a product of someone else’s decision-making is an attack (visually or physically). I’d get pretty riled up whenever someone said something to the effect of “but,it’s a doctor” or “it’s not like that.” Not like what? Reality? A situation is what it consists of. (I said almost this exact same thing to somebody else on this site, and it felt good to be able to do so- whether it imparts knowledge that supports someone or it’s just being able to converse about things)

      If you’re curious: the Boycotting thread & the Sensitive Examinations thread have a lot of things about counteracting an attack of an iatrogenic nature (abuse through medical methodology). There are also numerous books (Rosemary Gladstar writes a few & they have general use stuff, too) on “natural health maintence” (that seems like a good way to put it, since it’s not always herbal- uterine massage is a good-and, also, non-invasive- example).

  22. A well-respected male gynecologist sexually abused a number of female patients in New York. See an article about this doctor at http://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime/sex-abuse-allegations-gynecologist-pile-article-1.1396843?localLinksEnabled=false. This is exactly why women should avoid male doctors for intimate female health issues.

    Misty

  23. F.L. says:

    Hi Misty,

    Thanks for the link. This is a disturbing story for a few reasons:

    1. The male doctor had a female nurse present, but apparently found a way to get away from her.
    2. “Some of the women who have recently come forward will most likely be unable to join the lawsuit because the statute of limitations holds that the assault must have occurred within the previous year.” – As is the “white wall” that protects physicians isn’t strong enough.
    3. And finally …. ” ‘What he’s done is pretty pervasive, for the last nine years,’ Bhukta said Thursday, adding that coverage of the suit by the Daily News spread word about the alleged assault.” How was this able to keep happening for 9 years? It says a lot (as is true for other similar cases that have resulted in convictions) about the culture that serves as a barrier to reporting and stopping such offenses.

  24. Christina says:

    In 2010 I had my 1st ever colonscopy. I was sedated. When I was waking up afterwards in the recovery room, I saw a large male nurse by me and his hand was fondling my crotch. I was shocked yet could not say anything because I was still partially sedated and still trying to fully wake up. Then he put his hand under my butt cheek and rubbed it. I was shocked. I did not say anything about it. Tried to push it back from my memory because I knew it would be my word against theirs. The memory has now resurfaced again and I am haunted by it. Have bouts where I cry and anxiety attacks. Would it be too late to even think about pressing charges?

    • Alex says:

      That’s horrible! It seems to depend on where you are (statute of limitations seems to vary from state to state- if you’re in America). Don’t really know what the situation is with making things public (you might not be able to press charges successfully, but maybe the attempt gets things more noticable). I hope you get your just vengeance (maybe someone will do something like that to him)!

      Just as a suggestion: I don’t mean to “grade” you or anything, but pushing something to the back of your memory might not help as it seems. I don’t know if this is what the situation is, but what I mean is to properly demonize something while still trying to enjoy things in your life. Sometimes people try to blow it off, basically (like saying “it’s nothing anyway”)- but that elevates the situation to a non-issue & the “person” that caused it to a much higher level than it actually deserves. It’ll always taste like a lie, but also like you’re helping an enemy. You might not purposefully wallow in anything or deliberately stop enjoying things in your life, but some things do tend to stick with you. You’re not “embracing” anything, but properly applying hostility.

  25. I wanted to let everyone know about a case where a medical assistant spoke up about a doctor who sexually abused patients at http://www.wpxi.com/news/news/local/alleged-victim-speaks-out-against-fox-chapel-docto/nZC3K/. Most You all will notice that the medical assistant was scared to speak up because the doctor told her she would never get a job again.

    • I want to clarify one thing about this case. The medical assistant did not speak up about the abuse patients endured. She spoke up about how she was personally abused by the doctor. It seems like she came forward after some patients spoke up about the doctor abusing them. I bet she witnessed some patients being abused though.

  26. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    How horrifying is this…
    http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2013-01-04/mumbai/36148439_1_sexual-assault-medical-examination-medical-evidence
    Sexual assault is a BIG problem in India…
    I was also, shocked to hear a lawyer acting for a man charged with rape (a pack rape situation) and assault of a young woman (resulting in her death) say to the media, “in my long career I’ve never heard of an honourable woman being raped”…victim blaming gone mad.
    When these attitudes prevail, women are in a lot of danger….men know anything goes, and it’s ALWAYS the woman’s fault. (out late, dress too short etc.) It’s her conduct and appearance that will be judged.

    • Alex says:

      You know there’s a group called the Red Brigade in India. It’s a group of women that go after men that are causing problems (like physically attacking them). I don’t remember the exact story, but Google them- you’ll probably be pleasantly suprised. India also has a lot of problems with Muslims on that level (some of it happens in India, but by them).

  27. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Such brave and VERY young women, (some are just girls) it surprises me the men just take it, I would have thought they’d be in danger of assault or of a mob of men teaching them a lesson.
    I know in Egypt groups of men flood into Tahrir Square in the evening to protect women from gang rape and assault. There have been some horrifying cases of pack rape on foreign female journalists, but this is also, a huge problem for Egyptian women. Sexual assault has been ignored for so long the violence has now escalated…some of these women are attacked by 40 men or more…their clothing ripped off and pack raped and assaulted. Terrifying stuff..not only does it give these monsters sexual satisfaction and a sense of power, but they also hope to make women afraid, keep them at home and out of public life. We have our problems here, but my heart goes out to those who live in VERY violent countries.

    • Alex says:

      Yeah, and sometimes that goes manually, not just conventionally (something not typically referenced in martial arts classes). I’m suprised the men protect them there (it doesn’t seem to be the typical inclination). Over there, women get arrested for reporting rape (they get charged with having illegal sex, never mind that this was an imposed action & thus not the charge they were leveling at them). I wonder what happens if a woman (probably a group) were to rape a man? What does he get charged with? Maybe it’s not considered an attack because of methods employed? Women wouldn’t be able to use male anatomy, obviously. I wonder if the guy would report it at all?

      I’ve noticed that in this country (U.S.A.), things like that are generally acceptable as long as it’s done in a fancy way (police tactics, medical procedures, any of these things being done by the same gender, etc…). Even when deep down someone takes issue with something, there’s no real fighting back. It’s not a question of properties, but of designation when things like this come up. Interestingly, that’s what would earn something that sort of designation in the first place.

  28. Look at how a doctor sexually abused some women who were in their 70′s at http://www.ohio.com/news/hudson-pain-doctor-indicted-on-23-sex-charges-1.424680. Some people falsely assume that older women cannot be abused by male doctors. I know that many female nursing home residents have been abused by male medical personnel.

    • Alex says:

      You know, we haven’t touched on mental institutions, yet. Apparently, things can go in a prisonesque direction as far as security measures go (I posted that on the Psychological Harms thread). Actually, that’s true with pretty much everything. In a mental institution, someone saying this or that is happening is most likely considered crazy or “just trying to get back at them.” Don’t know what goes on with imposing investigations of these situations or medical treatments, but it’s certainly possible to impose these things in that environment (and then maybe they say it was a delusion & it never happened). Minors can have all kinds of problems in these situations, too.

  29. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Misty,
    There was a case with a woman in her 90s being sexually abused by her male carers. This poor lady knew what was going on, but couldn’t communicate after a stroke, their conduct was recorded on CCTV, I assume the family installed them after becoming suspicious. It makes me sick to my stomach. It doesn’t stop there either, quite a few years ago there were cases of men interfering with bodies at funeral homes, from ridicule to interference. Funeral homes run by women started at that time, my family has used their services. So we’re not even safe in death….male bodies were also, being treated inappropriately. So those inclined to abuse look for easy targets, and a position of power is even better. There have also, been issues with orderlies behaving inappropriately while women are in recovery after surgery. When the medical system is slack with our bodily privacy you feed predators, like allowing an orderly to hang around while a woman is being prepped for a c-section etc. (but her husband/partner is usually asked to leave or only allowed to enter after this process)
    We entrust our body to them when we go in for surgery etc. and that should be viewed as a great responsibility.

    • Alex says:

      I just read a thing that was saying it’s okay in Islam for a man to “have sex” with his wife’s corpse for up to six hours after death. Pretty damn creepy, isn’t it?

    • Elizabeth,

      Sadly, this does not surprise me. The medical profession is so gender neutral. You are right that it is hard for some elderly women to speak up. This is exactly why I’m so grateful that my grandmother decided to keep her mom who had a severe case of Alzheimer’s Disease at home instead of sending her to a nursing home. My grandmother hired a female caregiver to help some. My grandfather was very respectful of her dignity. He did not see her naked. My grandmother worked to protect her modesty even though she could no longer talk, walk, or feed herself.

      I hate to say this, but nursing homes are good places for predators to work in. Most male caregivers who abuse female patients are never caught. I also have heard of female caregivers abusing male patients.

      I strongly believe that every patient should have a personal advocate not employed by the medical facility to be present for all surgeries to ensure that a patient is not violated. It is ridiculous, but many medical facilities in the US still require patients to have their underwear off for surgeries that do not involve the genitals such as cataract, knee, hand, etc. Patients under anesthesia are most vulnerable in a hospital. Once you are under anesthesia, doctors and nurses can do pretty much anything to you.

      Misty

      • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

        Misty, my mother is 81, still fit, connected to the world and mentally active/alert, but she had a colonoscopy under GA two weeks ago which left her confused for a few days. We’re hoping she scraps these procedures, they knock her around and may shorten her life or affect her quality of life. It was exhausting caring for her for a week while she was confused, going over the same thing 20 times, you need such patience. I hope with all my heart that we can keep her out of a nursing home and that she’s independent, fit and alert to the end. (like her mother (died at almost 86) and her grandmothers. (86 and 94))

        Interesting…all but one (a heavy smoker who died of lung cancer in her 60s) of my female ancestors lived into their 80′s or 90′s with no pap tests, mammograms, routine breast, rectal or pelvic exams, they acted on symptoms…today they’d be labeled irresponsible and reckless with their health. Of course, they led lives free of routine medical interference, so apart from no screening, there were also, no “scares”, biopsies, LEEP etc.
        Screening exposes us to so many other potentially harmful procedures and we may even end up a pretend “cancer” survivor. (over-diagnosis)

        So they lived without medical supervision and enjoyed very long, happy and healthy lives. Yet today so many women fear not having routine exams and tests and IMO, have a poorer quality of life (biopsies and LEEP are no fun) which often compromises their health.
        Women managed very well when they trusted and listened to their healthy, asymptomatic body.
        (their babies were born at home too or in a bush nursing hospital with a midwife)

        My grandmothers were dignified and private women, they would have been horrified at the suggestion women need to get “used” to someone rummaging around their reproductive organs every year or two looking for “something” that might kill them. How did anyone manage to sell these exams to so many women, it goes against the evidence and common sense?

      • Alex says:

        Elizabeth- That’s a good point. My ancestors lived about the same lengths (some into their later 90s), and were strong & functional (physically & mentally). I “won” family history day by a wide margin (the teacher actually didn’t think I did the whole project because a lot of my relatives weren’t dead yet!), and a lot of their practices would have been considered unhealthy for being functional. It’s a complete backward standard.

        Doing something that is a problem in order to prevent problems? It’s like pouring oil on a grease fire as a means of extinguishing it! Never mind that it’s malicious fraud to give the impression of effectiveness & safety of these tests, as well as false representation of ailments to compensate for. If there is a pre-existing problem that they make worse with their counterproductive treatments, that is willful exacerbation or circumstances. All of this is an attack, which is antithetical to assistance. Their deleterious style is antagonistic to patient well-being.

        Learned some new words, so I thought I’d pass them along. Them acting like something detrimental is a component to medical aid is a huge problem & not very easy for people to articulate sometimes. It’s a “but that’s backward” moment that’s hard to phrase. Look at the situation with emergency care (specifically, them probing as they please). That’s an attack that wouldn’t work for diagnostic goals if it were consensual. It also consumes time that may very well be crucial for the survival of other patients. And they think they are SHIELDING themselves from malpractice lawsuits?

      • junaid khan says:

        this is the most correct and true comment by Elizabeth. there is no one to observe or protect patient in OT and medical staff sha,elessly take advantage of such situations

  30. Mary says:

    That’s funny, Elizabeth but I’ve noticed more and more funeral homes using female employees. Besides the all women ones popping up, I have also noticed one of the ones with a masculine name and image now using women as their “face”. I was reading a blog last week of somebody who works in the business who visited one of the all female ones and who went behind the scenes and said that they were the most open funeral home he’d been to ( and the most professional, adhering to every regulation). Apparently funeral homes are very secretive normally (hiding something?)but this all female one was very transparent. It seems to me that there is the perception out there that women are more trustworthy than men, at least in the funeral business and they are very successful. It’s funny but I was always suspicious of male undertakers (imagining that some of them treat bodies with little respect) and when I saw the all female ones appear I made a note to myself that I would only use them for my family.

  31. Kleigh says:

    Elizabeth, I agree with you. what gets me is other woman and doctors say if we arent seeing a gyn we do not care about are sexuall health. I dont like the term sexuall health it only seems to aply to woman bodies and it implys are sex lives will be ruened if we do not have ave gyn esams ans pap smears. Thats the term being used over hear in the US. I dont get it. It also seems like that all the female body is made for to have sex with men. And those woman who fall out of there chair when you say that you dont have gyn exams, I whould like to ask how there female relitves lived and birthed childern years befor them. And there is also an idea we are supose to be liberated and sleep with alot of men and then be protected by std screening and paps. The guidlines asume all woman sleep around unprotected by a sertain age and if not we are leing. And I hate that woman are expected to disclose there sex lifes to doctors . It is none of there bussnes unless the woman wants to tell. I feel it judges female sexuallity..

    • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

      Kleigh, I couldn’t agree more. I’m shocked at the questions some doctors ask their female patients. I don’t know if it happens here, but I was viewing a Patient History Form online, to be completed by new patients of an American gyn practice. (the well woman nonsense)
      I’d write on the form, “This is my business”…but then I wouldn’t be there in the first place.

      I think they’re very careful and clever when it comes to manipulating women, using your children against you is one tactic, an example is the NHS Cervical Screening Campaign, “My Mum missed her pap smear and now I miss my Mum”…all carefully designed to get you into the consult room. Using your child and fear, presenting testing as the responsible thing to do.
      As Dr McCartney pointed out…the risk of dying from cervical cancer is very low indeed. Not a word from the NHS about the risks, you’re far more likely to end up having an excess biopsy or treatment.

  32. I wanted to let you all know about a male doctor who used his watch to film female patients at http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2406993/Wootton-Bassett-doctor-used-spycam-watch-film-intimate-examinations-banned-profession.html. Our society teaches that male doctors are experts and professionals. This case proves that a male doctor never gets tired of seeing women’s private parts.

    The comments that the mother made to her daughter when she expressed she felt degraded were very disturbing: Her mother assumed that they were talking and had not realised how long he had been intimately examining her daughter.

    Her mother assumed that they were talking and had not realised how long he had been intimately examining her daughter.

    Her mother said: ‘When she came out of the room, I commented on how long it had taken and she said she’d never felt so degraded in her life. I remember saying “Welcome to our world”, because all women have to endure that kind of thing at some point. I feel so stupid now.’

    Misty

  33. I wanted to let everyone know about a case involving a male x-ray technician in India (http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2013-08-30/mumbai/41618006_1_diagnostic-centre-husband-mulund) who videotaped women changing their clothes. This is horrible. This article provided great tips about how to ensure that a changing room does not have a camera that could videotape you undressing.

    Misty

    • Alex says:

      Not to sound racist, but what’s the deal with India? A lot of doctors over here are Indian, too. I know there’s that Red Brigade & a lot of women from there have a desire for bodily autonomy (not having an arranged marriage, for instance), but it’s like they bring the trends of their culture over here (or wherever) & act as usual. Works that way with Muslims, too (read about Sweden & Norway with that- there was even a woman from that neck of the woods that got raped in one of the Arab countries & was put in prison for a while over that!).

      I have no idea where that kind of oppressive culture comes from (I’d think it would grate on people & get discarded). The whole concept is to attack, that’s what the “point system” is based on in those cultures. It’s what generates an “A+” and is considered appluadable thing to do, yet someone that attacks baselessly is considered trustable? If someone doesn’t factor in the properties of a situation when making assessments, what kind of trustablility do you have?

  34. I really do not think that race matters. A male medical professional of any race is capable of sexually abusing women. I do not think that men of any race should do intimate procedures or procedures that may involve exposure of private parts on women.

    Misty

    • Alex says:

      It’s possible from any race, but it’s more of a common trend in these cultures. It’s a tradition in some of these areas, I guess. Keep in mind, some women are lesbians or bi, too. It might very well just add an against orientation aspect to the situation. It also might very well be that these women just like causing people problems, or anything else- there’s all different forms of perks. Apparently, a lot of serial killers are attracted to medical professions because of a perceived control of life & death.

  35. Look at this article about sexual abuse by doctors in Kenya:
    http://www.standardmedia.co.ke/?articleID=2000092474&story_title=is-your-wife-safe-with-her-doctor&pageNo=1. Make sure you read the whole article. It’s 3 pages long.

    It is horrible that a woman with stomach pains went to see a male GP who forced a vaginal exam on her. Male doctors took advantage of teenage girls by requiring them to have pregnancy tests.

    This part was very disturbing to me:
    Jennifer Kimani* has been a victim: “I was being admitted to Form One 19 years ago to a school in Western Kenya and needed a medical report from a certified doctor. I too, was told to undress for a pregnancy test,” she says. She didn’t undress completely, though. She lifted her dress and the doctor began pressing her lower abdomen with his hands. “Before I knew it, his long cold fingers were suddenly inside my panty and his zip was bulging like he had a two-battery torch hidden in it. I have never felt so embarrassed — I was just a kid,” she says.

    This bothers me a lot because in my tips about how to prevent sexual abuse by doctors (http://sexualmisconductbydoctors.com/femaletips.aspx), I encouraged women to never let a male doctor touch or see private parts that are covered by a 2 piece bathing suit. This particular male doctor was examining the lady’s abdomen and then slipped his fingers inside her underwear. It made me realize that a male doctor could easily put his fingers down a woman’s underwear in an abdominal exam. How do you think we can prevent a male doctor who does an abdominal exam on a lady from putting his fingers down her underwear? Do you think the lady should hold the top of her shorts or pants?

    Misty

  36. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Misty,
    These things happen so quickly, it’s hard to control. It would be hard to fend off a doctor during an exam, holding onto your shorts/pants and bra. Perhaps, women should set the boundaries before the exam starts, what exactly does this exam involve?
    I know women (friends and online) who’ve said to a male doctor pressuring them to have an opportunistic pap test, ” I wouldn’t feel comfortable with a male doctor doing that sort of exam…for OBVIOUS reasons”. That direct statement made most of the doctors drop the subject or accept the woman would not be giving in and so they instead urged them to get screened with a doctor of their choice.
    I’ve never agreed with opportunistic screening, it places women in a very vulnerable position. We might be happy to see a male doctor for an earache, but a pap test is another matter. Many women feel traumatized and violated after being pressured into an unwanted/unexpected pap test. There is a study that shows psych issues may result from opportunistic screening, but Papscreen keep pushing doctors to do just that, giving them tips to increase screening coverage. I think their attitudes and conduct are disgraceful…and should have been addressed decades ago.

    The safest course of action is to handpick a doctor, this might mean several visits for trivial things, simply to sound out and assess the doctor’s conduct and attitudes. That’s how I found my trusted female GP, definitely worth the effort. Do I feel safe and in control in the consult room with this doctor?
    A doctor who makes you feel uncomfortable, pressures you to have an opportunistic pap test etc. talks over the top of you, lectures/speaks down to you, is rude/abrupt….avoid, get up and leave.

    I’ve never heard of a female doctor sexually abusing a female patient, (has anyone else heard of a case?) so obviously the risk is higher with a male doctor. A quick check of the cases heard at the Medical Board shows most (if not all) of those accused of sexual misconduct have been male. (This is the tip of the iceberg as most women don’t report medical misconduct or sexual assault)

    Female doctors may try to railroad you into a pap test, but that’s about reaching a screening target or because they “believe” in the test, (and may be unaware of the actual benefit and risks with testing) or they think it’s safer for all women to have pap tests. (and for them, not many women sue for over-treatment, so the risk is probably viewed all one way, that rare case getting past you)
    It’s also, because doctors, male and female, do not respect informed consent for women, so a recommendation becomes a law. The profession has always taken advantage of women, acting as gatekeepers of the Pill, demanding unnecessary breast and pelvic exams and elective pap tests. When boundaries are broken an “anything goes” attitude falls into place and we end up with medical abuse. Doctors know they can get away with coercion, harassment, intimidation etc.

    • Alex says:

      It doesn’t matter if their female or not, trying to impose a situation of this nature is an attack (it’s just a same-sex variety if the genders match). Just like “two guys in a prison cell” you can have a “two women in a prison cell” type of situation. Adding a woman into the mix might just add an against orientation aspect to things.

      I’ve heard of female doctors abusing patients (whether male of female). There’s numerous references on this site. A lot of times if doctors are going to try something abusive along those lines, they use a woman for it so they potentially get out of trouble. I remember posting something about emergency rooms & about that school in Strousburg PA that ambushed those 11-year-olds with pelvic exams (can’t remember which threads thos were in, though). I also posted something about law enforcement situations in the Psychological Harms thread (runs a lot of the same lines & medical situations can be involved).

    • Elizabeth,

      Thank you for your excellent insights! I went to a new female Internal Medicine doctor a few years ago to get a new prescription for ear drops. I am very prone to swimmer’s ear. She tried to encourage me to have a pap smear, but I declined. I told her that I did not need a pap smear and she moved on. I do not think doctors (even female ones) should talk to you about having pap smears if you come to them for a health issue that is not gynecological issue. I think that female doctors should always offer informed patient consent for women about pap smears and let them decide.

      We have to keep in mind that many female doctors have believed myths that they learned from male doctors in medical schools. I believe that this is why many female doctors are insensitive. I think it is ridiculous that many doctors still require women seeking a prescription for birth control pills to submit to a pelvic exam and pap smears.

      I had a male doctor in the ER many years ago when I had the strep throat. I would not let him do anything else. I told him that I only wanted him to do a strep throat test and he complied with my wishes. I also told him to keep the door open. I kept all of my clothes on and I never lied down on the examining table at all.

      Misty

      • Alex says:

        I’m suprised he didn’t try to wrestle you down & do one exam or another on you (or get a woman to do it)! Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad that didn’t happen- but I’ve heard that story a few times at different angles (with men & women alike)

        The female doctors believe these myths, I think, because it suits their purposes (whatever those might be, as there’s quite a bit of potential for underlying motives). Why is it that they didn’t think: “Hmm, when you don’t want something to leak you don’t screw around with the seal- maybe this applies to pregnancy?” Overall, it should occur to them that antagonism is antithetical to assistance (them imposing something of this nature is an attack, regardless). Medical quality is determined by patient satisfaction, not academic value- I’d think if they really gave a shit, that’s the conclusion they’d have come to.

        I’ve heard a few times that a lot of women in medicine have a “can’t control my life, so I’ll control someone else’s” thing going on or they want to get back at someone else & take it out on these people that they’re in contact with (or they have the same orientations as the male doctors- a point typically omitted).

    • junaid khan says:

      its better inform doctor about your concerns of modesty before first examination without any hesitation. this will warn the doctor and he will not take you for granted

      • Alex says:

        That’s potentially true, but they do like to argue. Namely, that “it’s not that way.” It’s not what? Extant? A situation is what it consists of, but they basically argue that what happens ISN’T what occurs.

        Another thing is that I wouldn’t phrase it as a modestly concern- since it’s not dialing down the sexiness of situation, but blocking off an imposition of that nature. It’s not a modesty thing if a woman throws an elbow back because someone grabbed her ass on the train, for instance. If it’s pointed out as a self-defense concern, instead of a “properness” issue, it might get taken more seriously.

        All this is true regardless of genders involved, too- but I notice a lot of female medical personnel seem to think they can do whatever they want to someone that has a similar anatomy to them.

        In fact, when male doctors are about to do something assaultive in that manner they seem to call in a female employee. For example: a common thing to hear about with falls & car accidents (any trauma patients, actually) is them imposing rectal exams on people- allegedly to diagnose spinal injuries/internal bleeding/broken bones. This isn’t even viable, whereas abdominal MRIs & CT sacans are. This is something that they act like they “don’t have the time” to NOT do! A guy actually spent three days in jail in New York when he fought back against them forcing this on him when he walked in to get stitches on his head.

        Sorry this was so long, but I felt I should explain what I meant about these things. Don’t know what you know, but that’s why I mentioned it.

      • Moo says:

        It is a good idea to discuss before if it is practical. Often a women is not expecting this and does not even come with her own chaperone. Surgery can also be a problem. However Canadian hospitals in large cities are getting better at understanding and accommodating modesty concerns due to large immigrant populations.

        Another problem is finding doctors that understand and policies that should be made. If a women requests a female doctor that should be honoured but not possible in some places or emergency situations.

        For Pap tests a male doctor should be required to at least refer to a female doctor for gynaecological exams if a women refuses for that specific reason. It is not done because there is no financial incentive to do that. The male doctor just hassles and hassles instead until the women is receiving a substandard care. She refuses exams or even stops going to a doctor

  37. Look at how a doctor pulled up women’s hospital gowns to take pictures of her private parts at http://www.thisissouthdevon.co.uk/Hidden-camera-doctor-faces-jail-admitting/story-19744767-detail/story.html#axzz2dqwIIbz9n.

    This is exactly why just a hospital gown does not protect a patient’s modesty or prevent sexual abuse.

    Misty

  38. Look at the ridiculous arguments this doctor ‘s lawyer tried to defend him at http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/story/2013/09/04/toronto-george-doodnaught-trial-closing-arguments.html. This is exactly why every patient should have a personal advocate not employed by the medical facility with them at all times while they are sedated or under anesthesia

    I was disgusted by this doctor’s statement at the end of the article. I hope that this doctor’s license is revoked permanently and that he can never work with female patients again.

    Misty

    • Alex says:

      I hope their relatives have a sense of direct reciprocation. Nothing to say he can’t get molested & maimed- that way he has a horrible set of memories & physical debilitation (can’t do anything like put pills in someone’s drink or jump them in a stairwell). If he can’t really do much of anything for himself anymore, that’d be interesting (and make him quite vunerable to the other members of his own kind that would be “caring” for him).

      Conscious sedation seems to mean “medical roofy.” It tends to do the exact same things (tending to make someone more suggestible & forgetful- sometimes of massive chunks of their life) and it doesn’t block pain, either. This is a way for someone to feel all the pain of whatever is going on, just not be able to remember it to testify later- certainly sounds deliberate to me. A real “They’re not going to block MY effect” kind of philosophy- and they’ll be damned if a patient is going to comport their own situation (particularly if this “inferior” is going to do something other than what they planned- other than what the “high quality answer” is, which they adjucate on their own).

      They truly do think that having any involvement with something generates a situation of annexation. If they have any sway over something, it’s theirs. It’s also slavery for them to be “pushed around” by anyone impeding their actions- as far as they’re concerned, the patient is an obstacle to them practicing medicine (doing the act of whatever medical procedures).

  39. Look at how complaints have grown about a pain management doctor in Ohio who sexually abused patients at http://www.hudsonhubtimes.com/news%20local/2013/09/15/complaints-mount-against-doctor-accused-of-sex-crimes. Many women who have been sexually abused by doctors do not report sexual abuse unless they hear of other complaints because they feel embarrassed or intimidated. I’m sure many more doctors have sexually abused patients than we can imagine.

    Misty

  40. Look at how a doctor who raped a patient in India was sentenced to life at http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2013-09-21/mumbai/42271759_1_icu-victim-life-sentence. It is obvious that India takes sexual abuse by doctors more seriously than the US.

    Misty

  41. Look at how a well-respected doctor in Las Vegas sexually abused a woman after asking her to remove underwear because she complained of leg & hip pain at http://www.reviewjournal.com/news/crime-courts/doctor-indicted-sexual-assault-charges. There was no reason for her to remove her underwear. It is disturbing about how this doctor’s lawyer defended him and said he had a lot of community support.

    Misty

  42. D. says:

    I had a horrible experience recently and no one will help so reading this blog was Inportant to me….thank you…

    • Alex says:

      Don’t know what you mean by “no one will help,” but you might be able to talk to a lawyer about whatever it was. A situation is what it consists of (for instance: if a doctor poisons someone with a needle, it’s still murder- it’s just an “iatrogenic” variation). Any interface with sexual areas as a product of someone else’s decision-making is an attack, it doesn’t matter what the variation is.

      There’s a potential legal “head shot” in pointing out that the properties of a situation don’t change by designation. Even though there’s a lot of “What? How can anything medical be an attack? How can it be wrong to force something that isn’t an attack?” an outright elaboration of the situation is something particularly helpful. The term “iatrogenic detriment” is a very useful one & it cuts through bullshit well. You had said that “no one will help” so I presumed that meant that you were trying to get some & finding every “gun was empty”- so to speak. Maybe that will load it for you.

  43. Anonymous says:

    I’ve had a really bad experience with a male doctor. I think most male doctors are weird creepy perverts who enjoy pap smears.they are underneath their white coats sadistic. Especially OBGYN doctors well some of them t. I realized at the moment when I was giving birth to my son. Some of them…especially my ex doctor don’t enjoy giving birth or to see a new life come into this world they like to see a woman in pain and blood. How do I know…because of the bad horrible experience I went through …..I hope another woman doesn’t go through what I had to endure …I was raped psychologically and physically….I hope the media focus more on this issue. And I’m glad websites like this exists to inform women. . Because I sure hell didn’t know what the term was and many women had their share of experiences in the hands of male doctors…smh I thought what I was feeling was wrong and I was losing my mind.But my heart was telling me otherwise…thank you guys

    • Alex says:

      You’re completely right about male doctors (a lot of female doctors are like that, too). When the males want to do something that is sexually antagonistic, they sometimes use women to do it- so they potentially don’t get in any trouble).

      The emergency room can be pretty dangerous, too (for men & women- and, I’m presuming, children). Look up that case where the guy had a rectal exam forced on him when he walked in for stitches on his head. If you Google “forced rectal exams” or “rectal exam for spinal injury” you should find some info on that. I remember looking up things on that case & not one doctor or nurse thought the hospital was wrong (actually, a bunch of them made him out to be the bad guy). They had a pretty oppositional attitude toward the patients, as well (a lot of “That’s tough” attitude).

      I posted about that in the Psychological Harms thread, but I just wanted to give a word of warning on that. Figured it’s the kind of thing you can get dragged into or unknowingly walk into & have an ambush form around you.

  44. Look at how a 86 year old male doctor was accused of sexually abusing women at http://www.dailyjournal.net/view/story/6aeae7f81b184986a0ea18c2971b1ba4/DE–Doctor-Sex-Charges/#.UkYiQe_D-M-. Many people falsely assume that you cannot be abused by an older doctor.

    Misty

    • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

      Older doctors may still be living in the, “I’m a God and untouchable” world. A friend was once called “girlie” by an older doctor when she dared to challenge him. Clearly she didn’t know her place…silent and compliant.
      It’s a shock for many doctors to find that powerless female bodies now have a voice and are prepared to challenge them and lodge complaints.
      Trust and respect cannot be demanded, you have to earn it, and that includes doctors.

  45. Look at how a neurologist at a VA Hospital abused some female veterans by doing unnecessary breast and pelvic exams on them at http://cjonline.com/news/2013-09-28/sexual-abuse-and-suspicious-prescriptions-va-hospital.

    Misty

  46. Look at how a doctor who took intimate pictures of women with his cell phone told women he was using his cell phone to time their heart rate. I hate that those women fell for this excuse and believed him.

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/doctor-suhail-ahmed-jailed-after-2339680

    • Mint says:

      Sickening isn’t it Misty. Time and time again you have warned women not to see male doctors for any type of examination. Some men just can not be trusted. The only way I can protect myself from this type of abuse is to avoid ALL male medical staff.

  47. I am not against male doctors for non-intimate issues. For example, I had a strep throat test by a male doctor and he did not do anything inappropriate at all. I kept all of my clothes on.

    Misty

  48. Look at a disturbing case where a 11 year old girl was molested by a well-respected doctor at http://wwmt.com/shared/news/features/top-stories/stories/wwmt_albion-doctor-claims-innocence-csc-charges-15512.shtml. It was apparent that the 11 year old girl’s mother was not with her when the abuse happened. This is exactly why parents should always be with their children in the examining room. It bothers me that this doctor seems to have a lot of supporters based on the news.

    Misty

  49. Look at how a male gynecologist took 35,000 pictures of female patients at http://www.thelocal.de/20131111/jail-for-gynaecologist-who-took-pics-of-patients.
    This does not surprise me. I think many more male gynecologists have secretly taken pictures of their patients than we can imagine. I am sure some of them are never caught. This male gynecologist hid a camera in a drawer at his office.

    Misty

  50. I have never heard that breast exams are unnecessary for women under the age of 40, yet this article about a medical technician being charged with sexual assault claims this is the case:

    “The charges allege inappropriate medical exams at Ontario military recruitment sites in Thunder Bay and London from 2003 to 2009.

    Wilks used the medical exams to see and touch the women’s breasts, and let them think it was part of the examination, which was “totally dishonest,” D’Auteuil said.

    “The court found no reason to disbelieve any of these women.”

    Wilks testified on his own behalf, but d’Auteuil said he was not believable.

    The judge accepted evidence there was no need for the women to have undergone breast exams at their age. No such exam is required for women under the age of 40.

    “He did that for his own personal sexual gratification,” said d’Auteuil. http://www.cbc.ca/news/ex-military-medic-convicted-of-sex-assault-for-bogus-breast-exams-1.2428708

    The judge doing the sentencing is sending a clear and much appreciated message. But what about all the unnecessary pelvic exams for birth control pills and other health needs? In my opinion unnecessary pelvic exams should also be classified as sexual assault.

    • Alex says:

      You’re absolutely right! Especially considering that one’s much worse than the other- not that either is acceptable.

      I still don’t like the term “need” or “required,” because it definitely implies a situation of non-discretion. If something has low-utility, it should be phrased that way (“this” doesn’t work to detect “that,” for instance). Whatever someone’s level of information, their refusal is not hollow. Doctors frequently maintain that if someone argues with them they’re not informed or they’re not mentally fit to handle themselves- so the patient’s consent is now outsourced to the doctor.

      Also, it doesn’t matter what amount of utility something has, it’s an attack when something of this nature is imposed on someone. If someone elects to not have these things done to them, that’s their decision. If they don’t consent to something, it doesn’t matter whether they have background information to back it up.

    • Alex says:

      Like I keep saying: A situation is what it consists of. Properties don’t change because of designation, so all the camouflage is exactly that.

      These are good observations, but I don’t think they’re always “missed” by others, if you get what I mean. It’s a lot of acting unaware of something to feign innocence & use someone’s conscience against them- they don’t want to hurt someone that’s innocent (not a bad quality, but it doesn’t apply in this case).

      I know I’ve said it before, but I think it’d be a good thing to make it a more prevalent observation: Dynamics don’t change because standards do.

  51. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    I agree, routine pelvic and breast exams and pap testing for the Pill or anything else cannot be medically justified, they are not clinical requirements for anything.
    I don’t have routine breast exams and I’m a lot older than 40, there is no evidence of benefit, but they lead to excess biopsies. No, thank you.
    I think the medical profession has always taken liberties with the female body, starting when the profession was mostly male….and they got away with it. When people in a position of power get away with abuse, it continues….and may escalate. Also, the abuse becomes normalized so some women won’t question a doctor reaching for her breasts when she attends for an earache. So complaints are not made, it may even be put down to thoroughness. Some doctors here argue they were taught to do routine breast exams or believe in it’s value. The medical association needs to caution these doctors to better protect women. If it’s not recommended the doctor must make that clear to the patient and obtain express informed consent. Also, they should release a statement to the public alerting women to the fact routine breast and pelvic exas are not recommended. They should also, say pap tests are elective and can never be required for anything. Of course, that won’t happen.
    The AMA, IMO, do not respect informed consent for women, some of their statements are scandalous, making clear the Old Guard are still in control and they know what’s best for women. We even heard the incredible statement that women on the Pill need pap tests and may need breast exams from the AMA when the Govt allowed chemists to provide a small quantity of the Pill if women were caught short.
    This statement makes clear the AMA still links the Pill and elective cancer screening….yet we’d never hear them say men need prostate exams for Viagra.
    The AMA, IMO, has always protected the program and vested/their interests…they don’t respect or protect women.
    I can recall women having a breast exam when they saw their doctor with a flu or stomach upset, I always suspected the young and attractive got the excess, things like breast exams….while older women did not have these exams. (or not as often)
    I became suspicious as a very young woman when I noticed attractive women got the works for the Pill while overweight, older etc. women did not have these exams. (or not as often) A very overweight woman at University got the Pill for many years from a male doctor at Student Health with a blood pressure test. No mention of breast and pelvic exams or pap tests. So I always felt some concern that perhaps, some male doctors “used’ their professional position to take advantage of those they found attractive. I avoided doctors, exercised extreme caution and thankfully, I was able to use the Billings Method and enjoyed good health.
    Sexual abuse will always occur to some degree when inappropriate conduct and exams are encouraged or permitted.
    Women should challenge these exams, only then will more doctors see it’s no longer safe to take advantage of the patients they find desirable or to use women to boost profits or in the exercise of extreme defensive medicine. The casual way they view examinations of the female body needs to change and their safe sense of entitlement, only clinically required exams we agree to have should occur. Doctors need to understand that doing something not clinically required and without our informed consent carries serious consequences.

  52. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Also, I view it as worse than a creep grabbing your breast on the subway, because doctors are in a position of trust and have a professional duty of care. So the subway guy would face the Police, so should a doctor. (as well as the Medical Board) I don’t believe this sort of conduct should be handled by the Medical Board, similar to perverted priests being handled by the Church, why should this type of alleged sexual abuse be treated differently, as something less serious? I consider it just as serious and probably, worse….given the position of trust.
    I know we saw real action quickly when women starting going to the Police, rather than the Medical Board. For decades the latter IMO, did little more than protect doctors.

    • Yes I agree it is worse when a doctor does it. You are expecting to be treated professionally and feel you are in a safe space, so when something creepy takes place it can be devastating. First you have to make sense of it – and during this phase it can feel as if you are losing your mind because it wasn’t supposed to be this way. You can doubt yourself or even blame yourself. It is interesting how putting sexual abuse in the context of a medical situation tends to absolve the perpetrator. Imagining the actions involved in a coerced pelvic exam – taken out of the medical setting – it does become easier to see it for what it is. Imagine a woman being sedated and without her knowledge or consent having her vagina penetrated by a group of strangers. If it happens on a subway you can see it clearly as rape. Yet when it happens via surgery where a group of medical students are “practicing” pelvic exams then the exact same actions are deemed acceptable. Or imagine a woman in a shoe store wanting to buy a pair but the salesman says “no, you can’t have these unless you let me do a pelvic exam first” – this is IMO similar to the practice of being coerced into a pelvic prior to being granted birth control pills because a pelvic exam in this situation is equally irrelevant. If the same coercion were to happen in a shoe store it becomes easier to see it more plainly for what it is.

  53. Here is a bit of good news:

    “A Toronto court has found Dr. George Doodnaught, an anesthesiologist, guilty of sexually assaulting 21 women while they were under conscious sedation in a hospital.

    The verdict was handed down in a packed courtroom shortly after 10 a.m. ET Tuesday, bringing tears to the eyes of many of the victims present for the decision. Some people could be heard sighing with relief or whispering “yes.”

    It’s heartening to see some justice in this case. The evidence was overwhelming as 21 women (who did not know each other) came forward with similar stories against the same doctor. The old excuse of “it was the anesthetic causing hallucinations” just couldn’t cut it in this case. I wonder too how many other women were victims and did not come forward. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/dr-george-doodnaught-guilty-of-21-sex-assaults-of-patients-1.2431679

  54. Locksmith says:

    Hi I was badly abused by a doctor when I was at university during colonoscopy. I am devastated by PTSD and have no idea how to get over it. Every time I try and talk about it to a medical person Including pysychological help I am shot down. A terrible impact on my life. It really resonates this thing about not knowing what is happening to you. I thought some of the things that were happening were part of the process as I was young. Has anyone got any ideas about how to move on? Now in my late forties – have other medical issues and have to go into hospital this month for spinal surgery.

    • Alex says:

      This is pretty long, but maybe it will help:

      They are dead wrong to shoot you down- a situation is what it consists of & if it consists of an imposed interface with a sexual area, it’s an attack. It’s specifically called an “iatrogenic attack”- which is a fancy way of saying assualt using medical methodologies. Properties don’t change because of designation, so someone trying to argue with you is, for all purposes, acting crazy. I’ll bet they wouldn’t say “What happens ISN’T what occurs,” but for what they’re saying to be accurate that would have to be an underlying presumption. Keep in mind: altruism doesn’t produce ownership, so the argument that “they want to help” doesn’t hold up. They don’t annex people with their decisions if they DID have charitable intentions (a big “IF,” considering that it’s pretty easy to say & what they did wasn’t help).

      As for moving on, I’ve heard it said “the answer to pollution is dilution.” It was in reference to the environment, but I figure it carries over to something like this. Keep in mind, some things tend to stick with you & pervy stuff is one of them (things getting strange in a military situation does that, too & I’ll bet because of the combative “demeanor” of the subject, nobody’d argue that one). Properly demonizing something AND trying to move foward is a possible idea.

      I DO know a few things that are bad ideas, however: Trying to elevate a problem to a non-issue (ex: acting like “it’s nothing, anyway”) is a pretty typical thing & is basically given as advice, but it’s something that’ll cause problems. It’s now sugar-coating a bad situation (which will always taste like a lie, since it is one) & inadvertantly prettying-up whoever caused it. On top of that, it makes for a more hospitable environment for this kind of thing to happen (whether it’s to the same person again, or someone else for the first time) & if you were to actually act according to the facade, it would be something you wouldn’t try to counteract (because it’s “not an issue,” it wouldn’t be something to take strides against). Although the logic on that one doesn’t entirely make sense, since there’s more than one reason for going against something (being disinclined toward something & hostility toward the other party are two right there). Either way that does happen (particularly with men, for some reason- in spite of the general theme of antagonistic behavior toward an enemy).

      Pretty sure there’s the capacity for advocates & such to actually be in the surgery room, but not entirely sure how to go about it. I think OverItAll was the one one this site than mentioned a bunch of this stuff (it might have been in the Psychological Harms thread). Getting all kinds of things in writing ahead of time is another point. Making very distinct specifications & all. I’m not too knowledgeable on that subject & have low faith in laws, but it might be useful to have a lawsuit ready to go.

      You’re absolutely right to be worried about being unconscious in the hospital. Actually, a fairly common things seems to be imposing recatal exams on people with a “possible spinal injury” backstory. This is particularly true in car accidents & falls, but it seems to frequently get integrated into the overall emergency room response: Abdominal MRIs & CT scans are viable ways of detecting spinal injuries, internal bleeding, broken bones, etc…, but what they do instead is say to people that they can tell different things by the muscule tension & such- which is NOT viable). There was actually a bit of a big case about this in America (a guy walked into a hospital for stitches on his head & they forced a rectal exam on him, then he got locked up for defending himself). Look up “The Buckeye Surgeon: Excuse me sir, I need to place a finger in your rectum” (it’s a blog or something by this doctor who goes on a rant about how wrong everyone else is to decide not to have someone else probe them). There were a whole bunch of differnet posts on forums & such over this, but they all carried the same theme: “That the patient was an obstacle to their actions & if they don’t like or want what gets directed at them, tough.” They basically made him out to be the bad guy.

      Also, there are “medical roofies” like Versed & Hypnovel which do all the same things regualr roofies do, and they don’t block the pain that they’re supposedly used for. It seems that that tends to be used with “conscious sedation,” but sometimes they say things like “You won’t even remember (whatever it is)” or “Just a little something to help you relax” before they use stuff like this. I guess it’s meant as some kind of sick joke.

      I’m sure you’ve looked up all kinds of things on hospital-borne infections & mishaps, but one of the things that might give you pause is catheters. They tend to think that they make their own decisions with these things & get very mindlessly rooted to the idea of “one thing goes with the other,” but there are EXTERNAL ones for women & there’s even adult diapers (if that sort of thing is a concern. Internal catheters are also a serious source of infection (potentially fatal infection), so I’d spend some time on that. Maybe a specific clause in your “This Is How I Want Things Done” paperwork. Anything they tell you- be very cynical (presume it’s bullshit in the first place, at least on some level), make sure to double/triple check, maybe get it in writing (even if you aren’t going to do it, anyway- just the state of them saying “this” on paper).

      If anything is a problem or seems to be the forerunner of one, just leave. I definitely do think that the medical professions (at least, the allopathic ones) need to be conquered & overhauled until they are massively different from their current forms- but a lot of times they’ll do the “Bait & Switch” tactic & just tell you whatever sounds good. If they start giving you shit, maybe it’s a sign that they don’t intend on following your discretion. Sounds like you’re in Europe, maybe one of the other countries that aren’t so bossy & medically dictatorial. It seems the Netherlands have a lot of high-quality things, but I don’t know much about that- even though I’m trying to move to Europe in a year or two.

    • Locksmith I am sorry that happened to you. I’m not sure what works because it is probably different for everyone. What has worked for me is to try and live a healthy life and avoid doctors (like the plague!). I feel badly you are having to undergo surgery, but have you considered options besides surgery? It seems there is a push for surgery even when it may not be necessary – surgery is a very lucrative business. I don’t know what your spinal situation is, but if it is a back injury and you delve into the research you will discover that outcomes are similar between natural healing of back injuries and surgical interventions. Natural healing can take time though, and there are good and bad days throughout the healing process. But for you surgery may be the best/only option?

      If you have no choice other than to undergo surgery then Misty’s site has many good articles about protecting yourself from abuse during surgery. Having another person present throughout the entire procedure is a good protective option, as well as refusing Versed:http://patientmodesty.org/versed.aspx
      As another commenter has said, there is nothing you can do to change the past, but you can certainly take steps now and in the future to ensure it never happens to you again.

      • Locksmith says:

        Thank you for your replies – had a very calming effect on me as the weekend was very tricky emotionally to say the least. Sadly the surgery has had to be fought for. I was attacked by a special needs student two years plus ago and ended up with mild brain damage and chronic neck problems. I was told repeatedly that the neck issues were ‘psychological’. However, it turned out to be a pack of lies and I have spinal damage and suspected cord impingement. All apparently seen on initial images/MRIs Wanted a disc replacement but things have gone to far in the interim and am stuck with a spinal fusion. With my general mistrust of the medical profession, this has all added insult to injury, so am obviously very jumpy about going into hospital. Husband has taken time off work as I don’t want to be left on my own and am going to try and arrange friends to be around a lot. Interesting about the catheterisation and will refuse this if offered. Thanks again. I find this site very empowering just knowing people believe me is a great start. Trying to talk about it over the years to so called professionals has added damage after damage and do you know I still never got to tell the whole story in the end – so no-one knows!

  55. I encourage you all to comment on Dr. Bernstein’s blog at http://bioethicsdiscussion.blogspot.com/2013/10/patient-modesty-volume-59.html#c4892275693277893261. Dr. Bernstein and Gerald do not share the same views we do about sexual abuse by doctors. It would be great if some of you could comment to support me.

    Misty

    • Misty,
      I have read the comments on Bernstein’s blog. I was appalled at some of the statements, especially in regards to the claim that it is “ridiculous” to want locked doors to keep out unwanted prying eyes. I have no desire to comment on Bernstein’s blog. There is a culture of dismissal, negativity, and a refusal/inability to acknowledge the issue of sexual abuse within the medical community that prevails. It is this type of prevalent attitude of denial and dismissal that is so dangerous because it perpetuates the abuse.

      To comment on Bernstein’s blog feels similar to what it might feel like for a Jewish person to enter Auschwitz and expect to be treated as a human being. It just is not going to happen.

  56. Sue,

    I can certainly understand your feelings. I do not think that Dr. Bernstein really cares about patient modesty. I think he tries to manipulate people to change their minds. What he said about sexual abuse is very untrue. If it was really true that medical professionals did not sexually abuse patients, why do we hear about it so much? The truth is I bet many male gynecologists secretly take pictures of women’s private parts and never get caught.

    Gerald also was very critical of me when I shared about how I was proud of one of my friends who drove her teenage daughter over 30 minutes away to take her to female NPs to protect her.

    Misty

  57. Moo says:

    In large multicultural Canadian cities, more hospitals, medical offices and other public services are
    More careful about respecting cultural differences and accommodating different ideas about modesty etc. it is not just asked for, it is demanded. More clinics advertising women doctors because some women feel uncomfortable being examed by male doctors due to cultural reasons. This seems fine when it is due to culture. No one can demand it for modesty or comfort if they have PSTD or were suvivors of abuse.

    The “we are all American here” so there is a common culture or maybe whatever other countries is mono excuse to forcing a total disregard to any patients modesty. It is just an excuse and convenience for a hospital to say that no accommodations can be made for modesty such as “we’re all medical professional here” so people walking in and out of a room when you are naked and exposed is just fine. Suck it up.

    If people were telling hospital “yeah I did get good medical care but I am not making a donation or using your services again because my modesty was not respected” there would be change. Unfortunately having a monopoly in some areas makes for a substandard or mediocracy. Patients are consumers.

    Families of patients in hospitals and nursing homes could complain about sexual abuse but more of the problems are neglect, lack of proper timely care, mistakes in medication and theft. Modesty is not the foremost. Having a family member accompany a patient at almost all times in the only way to prevent neglect and abuse. Obviously there are some places like surgery theatre that a family member might not practically be allowed.

    Doctors are required to report sexual abuse of patients by other doctors. I wonder how often it happens.

    • Moo,

      Patients need to start demanding that a family member be with them for surgery and if the hospital refuses to honor their wishes, patients should go somewhere else. We do not need to let medical facilities tell us that a family member cannot be present.

      Misty

    • Alex says:

      That’s a good idea about someone “not making a donation.” Got a good laugh out of it, too. It might be an effective strategy, that their monetary compensation is at stake if they cause problems. I think it might be good to be able to revoke their diplomas, as well (they certainly seem to think a lot of themselves because of it- maybe they’re forbidden from holding a degree ever again?).

      One thing: I’d suggest using the term “protection,” not modesty- after all, it IS a self-defense issue. When people hear the term “modesty,” it seems that a lot of times they think of these oppresive “sex is wrong” cultures or that it’s marginal concerns (like it’s a “politeness” issue, not a “threat” issue). It think sometimes it comes off weak, too. Like someone is being delicate or “baby-ish” in some way.

  58. F.L. says:

    In response to Sue’s comment about Bernstein’s blog

    I couldn’t agree more. I mistakenly thought that this blog might be similar to the Medical Patient Modesty site, and perhaps to FWEO in it’s attempt to raise awareness about some of the issues discussed on this blog. WRONG. Misty does a great job of raising good points on the site and appears to have backed Bernstein into a corner so that he and a like-minded commenter have revealed their true colors. It is pretty clear the site is less about creating a safe space for expression of patient concerns about modesty and is more about physicians having a platform for expressing themselves in a paternalistic and authoritarian manner. Worse still is that there is one commenter – apparently a physician — (won’t take long for you to figure out who I mean) who goes on misogynistic rants about female nurses and is pretty much allowed to do so without challenge by the host of regular visitors who call the site home.

    It is not a safe space.

    Personally, I wouldn’t waste my keystrokes on it.

    • Mary says:

      You mean “PT”? No he’s not a physician from what I can gather. He worked in a hospital it seems as some kind of support role. I used to read the blog a couple of years ago and I got sick of this man claiming that men suffer all sorts of modesty violations why women get all the choices and consideration in the world. He states complete untruths on a regular basis like for example there were plenty of female gynaecologists for women to choose from in the past to women only got into medicine on a quota basis. Dr Bernstein did dispute that there was a quota system, but I only found out not long ago that there was a quota system in some places but not for a MINIMUM number of female medical students but for a MAXIMUM number of female medical students. The man is a complete misogynist in particular to female nurses because he was forced into a hernia exam by female nurses as a young man in the army ( not their fault, obviously the system) and he forever accuses female nurses of being perverts. Of course accusations of sexual abuse by female nurses seems very rare. Even when I read in the newspapers of nurses committing abuse it turns out it was a male nurse in all the cases. I don’t know why Dr Bernstein lets him post such lies all the time. I got sick of reading them.

  59. Look at how woman, LJ talked against my advice at http://bioethicsdiscussion.blogspot.com/2013/11/patient-modesty-volume-60.html#c4753105325851593435. I know she also does not like the comments Doctor Watchdog has made. I know it is her choice to go to a male gynecologist of course. But there have been too many male gynecologists who have sexually abused women. I think it is important to warn women. I was wondering if some of you could respond to LJ with the truth.

    Misty

    • Alex says:

      I know this is going to come off a bit vulgar, but maybe she likes the guy in a relationship kind of way. Maybe he’s a source of approval? Attention? I mean she’s got a real “standing guard” style with her reply & I’ve got to wonder how someone actually things it’s beyond belief that there’s some general pervyness going on in a medical situation. I know I’ve said it before, but a situation is what it consists of.

      This sounds like a woman that would say “it’s not like that” if someone snatched someone up to go do some aggressive role-playing or if someone’s relative decided to “play doctor” on them when they were younger. She basically thinks there’s no such thing as medical harm & that there can’t ever be an iatrogenic variation of attack.

      Imagine this: Someone (man or woman) in a white lab coat chases someone through a parking garage, telling someone to “get back here” & that “they need to do this,” wrestling them to the ground, then probing them (manually or with an implement. That is an antagonistic circumstance, yes? It’s not somehow OTHER than that. I don’t get how something massively less severe (like a husband punching his wife in the face, for instance) is seen as an attack, but much worse is not. No mercy for a pickpocket, but someone picking at a someone’s underwear is okay?

    • ADM (Canada) says:

      Reading Dr Bernsteins blog it seems that there is a lack of understanding that any violation of bodily autonomy can feel like an assault to that person. Even if full informed consent was given or being undressed with care and being covered. Control of their body is being taken away which has psychological implications. People who have gone through a serious illness such as cancer will sometimes struggle with PTS or PTSD after due to the threat to their life but also the loss of control over the body that includes having many medical procedures performed on them. The psychological effects could be worse if their modesty isn’t protected and if they haven’t given full informed consent. The responsibility does not rest on us as the patients but for the medical community to realize that there is a psychological aspect to healthcare and patients can end up feeling that they have been assaulted.

    • Alex says:

      Not to sound like I’m squaring-off with you- but it’s not a modesty concern, it’s a self-defense issue. “Modesty” sounds like someone trying to be perpertually frumpy or something. I know it’s not like that, but it DOES come off like someone that hold repressive beliefs high.

      Another thing I’d mention is that when someone says that “it can FEEL that way,” tends to imply that that person is wrong. Again, I know it’s not meant that way- but that’l definitely sound like they’re mistaken & it’s kind of a frivolous extra for someone to worry about that. The fact that this is the situation is seen as a glitch that’s “on them.” Not that there’s any victim-blaming with this general subject.

  60. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    ADM, my sister-in-law had cancer when she was 32 and for her the most traumatic part of the experience was lying naked while male technicians measured her body – this was to make covers for the parts of her body that were not going to be treated with radiation.
    Not much has changed, a family friend works in this field and says two female or two male techs is still very difficult and usually all they can offer is one of each, a male and female tech. She knows it’s unsatisfactory, these patients are not so worried about sexual assault, but simply don’t wish total exposure of their body to the opposite sex. It’s not just young people either, many older people request same sex care.
    A Muslim woman refused the treatment with males or a mixed sex team so her doctor’s office moved mountains to accommodate her wishes. This is an example of sloppiness and a lack of care and sensitivity, it can have a permanent and devastating effect. Some may cancel or delay treatments, some may not feel they can complain and suffer in silence, some are left distressed and traumatized….not great when your mental state is so important when you have a serious illness. She suspects one young woman decided against treatment because of this reason, but kept it to herself, it was possibly the last mountain she didn’t have the energy to climb, feeling depressed already and not wishing to put herself through more.
    She knows many endure it and don’t feel they can make a real fuss, which is usually what’s required in her department..the system knows most will give-in eventually…she feels bad when a patient has tears running down their face during this humiliating process. When we can send people to the Moon, you’d think we could protect the privacy of people during these treatments. The measurements must be precise, but surely we could work around a paper gown IF WE ACTUALLY CARED. My SIL still gets upset to this day, decades later, when she recalls her mortification, anger, distress, frustration etc. having to lie completely naked while two men took measurements of her body etc. She wept during the entire process and fell into a decline, it definitely took a lot of fight out of her. She coped by pushing it out of her mind, but feels this may be the reason it keeps coming back to haunt her and upset her all over again. Part of the problem was also, the lack of understanding from other people, “don’t worry they see naked people all day”…what is so often forgotten, this was about her and her feelings, not them. Trivializing, dismissing etc. her feelings made things worse.

    • Alice (Australia) says:

      Too true, Elizabeth.
      It always angers me that in Australia practically the only way to get rid of males touching your body is to be a Muslim woman. Australia is all too nice to go out of its way in order to respect wishes of various cultures and religions. Anything that may remotely resemble religious or cultural discrimination is a big “no-no”.

      Yet the same Australian system doesn’t give a $hit when a Christian or atheist woman doesn’t want males around her naked body. That woman will be declared unreasonable, be told she needs to suck it up, seek special consulting, or be presumed a victim of domestic violence. To me, it looks like discrimination, against non-Muslim women!

    • Alex says:

      You know why the Muslims get all that stuff? Because they get together & attack the situation in a sustained way. They don’t try to recruit or ask why someone does something. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that they are always right when they go after something (a lot of cultural/religious things with them are not very autonomy bolstering, particularly with women).

      My point is that their strategy is to actually COUNTERACT things. They don’t ask if someone wants to switch things around. They don’t ask if someone agrees with them. It’s not an invitation to desist in hostilities. I would think that “My body, my rules” would be good enough (especially in countries that pretend to be about freedom & all that). The doctor (and other people, too) like to argue when someone has a problem with something. They say “This is a problem,” but the one hearing it isn’t “convinced.” There’s also the point of ulterior motives that are not going to be advertised (and the fact that vicarious thrills are entirely possible).

      I’ve noticed a trend with the America-esque countries: they tend to think that altruism produces ownership. They attack people & then say “just trying to help.” That’s their way of trying to annex people. Conquest through fake concern. Ever notice that?

  61. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    I was a bit surprised that Dr Bernstein’s site is not all that supportive of patient concerns, one woman posted about conduct that sounded like sexual abuse, yet she was dismissed fairly quickly with the general fob-off stuff, I stopped reading a while ago. I find Dr Joel Sherman’s site fairly safe, he’s prepared to listen and do some research, he had no idea that cc was so rare and that women were being so terribly over-screened. This discovery prompted him to write an article for the Kevin MD site and it appeared in the WSJ. He also, challenged the female doctor (can’t recall her name) who shut down a thread on her website when women (including me) started questioning the value and need for pap testing and discussing informed consent, (or the lack thereof) clearly it was FAR too threatening for her. That woman also, deleted my entire post because I mentioned the Delphi Screener, she thought I might be marketing the Screener. (I wish…) I don’t accept that explanation, you could delete the name of the device, IMO, she didn’t want women to know about the new Dutch program, the significance of HPV, the pointlessness and risks with the well-woman exam and that we can test ourselves for HPV. She went on to write an article on mammograms for the Kevin MD site, I enjoyed responding to her knowing she couldn’t do a thing about it, no power to delete my post and oh, all of that glorious information for all to read, including her patients. (heaven help them)
    I have to say…I have no respect for any doctor who goes to such lengths to keep women (and her patients) in the dark. It’s disrespectful at the very least…

    There was a lot of discussion on Dr Sherman’s site for 2-3 years, but it’s very quiet now, on the Women’s Privacy Concerns thread anyway, most of us went to BlogCritics and are now posting here. I must post more often on Dr Sherman’s site, it’s so important to have physicians on our side, those who offer support, they have the power to reach a big audience, to get change rolling, people thinking…an article in the WSJ makes a big difference.

    By the way, Gilbert Welch has responded to the American on-air mammogram (40 year old Amy Robach) and the apparent discovery of cancer. Once again, the voice of calm and reason.
    http://edition.cnn.com/2013/11/20/opinion/welch-mammogram-robach/

  62. Ro says:

    Elizabeth – That was an excellent article! CNN is a big deal! The comments were a bit disappointing though. The point of the article was to educate women so that they can make an informed decision. Most of the commenters were angrily arguing that all women need to undergo mammograms at least once a year because it’s better to be over-treated than dead. Neither is a good thing. Over-treatment can lead to lots of problems. Death is horrible, but it’s something unfortunate that all humans must experience. It’s as much a part of life as life itself. I can tell you one thing, though, the medical industry in general has gotten to me and made me feel paranoid to some extent, even with the knowledge I have now. It’s easy to understand why these women got so defensive. I’m 20 and nearly all of my friends have had abnormal paps (some of them leading to follow-up treatments), removal of benign ovarian cysts, or a breast exam which led to further inspection or biopsy. Furthermore, almost everyone I know, even people younger than me are all on medication. I don’t take anything. Because of that, I feel like something is going to go wrong at any minute. Particularly with my female organs. I wonder why that is? It wouldn’t have anything to do with constant propaganda would it? It’s all just completely scary. On the one hand, I absolutely do not want to participate in screening. Particularly for the reason of psychological harm – I can’t even stand the thought of undergoing any of that but also knowing there are lots of physical risks that can come with it as well. Furthermore, I understand that most cancers involving the female organs are rare. On the other hand, there’s always the chance that I could be one of the unlucky ones. My great great grandmother died from bleeding out. They don’t know the exact cause of death, but that’s considered a risk factor by doctors. Several women in my family have had abnormal results and treatments but how do I know if they actually had cancer? I just hate that I feel obligated to screen or die from what I’m not being screened for. As I said, even being educated on the subject, I still feel this way at times. Does anyone else go through that?

    I would like to end this comment, though, by saying that it’s interesting looking at women from other places in Europe. Particularly Finland, The Netherlands, and The UK. While they do have more regular screening programs in the UK, it seems as though women there feel more free to make a choice in the matter and an article I read from Wales gave lots of honest facts and said that doctors should respect a patient’s refusal and provide informed consent. Furthermore, the women in those places don’t seem to worry as much about their health, in general. Another thing, when you look at the statistics, those women have the same percentage rates of cancer as women in the US or Canada or Australia, if not a bit lower. I just feel so frustrated and pressured with all of it sometimes.

    • Alex says:

      Keep in mind: “catching something early” doesn’t mean “reporting it to the patient.” Look at their general style- it’s their inclination to cause harm to people. I know they don’t fly a banner or openly advertise it, but that’s their style/culture. Personally, I’m suprised so many women take anything they say seriously (I mean if a cheating boyfriend told you ANYTHING from that point on, it’d be suspect- this is someone that actually goes after you, though). You’re not somehow defective just because you’re of the female gender. I get that it’s depicted that way, because that’s all you hear about- but it’s just implict deception (the situation would have to be this way in order for what they’re saying to be true, but it’s not true).

      By-the-way: That thing you said about everyone being on medication- Don’t you find that strange? There’s never anything “fine with you,” is there? If they’re just believed because of their college education, it’s pretty easy to lie. Someone going to college doesn’t make them trustable. Also, someone can start out trustable & then change. Add in someone being too arrogant to catch their own mistakes (and won’t ever question or contradict the information that they are so “wonderful” for possessing, because that would kick the chair out from under their ego addiction).

      What you’re feeling is what happens sometimes in these situations. They use that somewhat automatic trust. Not to be condescending, but it’s usually harder (not impossible, but harder) for women to “throw someone out.” That kind of 100% against someone type of state can be a bit more confrontational than is smooth & easy for a woman. It’s very “destructive” & women tend to be more about bolstering things than chopping them down.

      They use subtle tactics to cause misery & general detriment, then try to run a guilt-trip on people by saying that they try to help. How is it, then, that they act in this way? Why doesn’t it bother them to the point of not engaging in this kind of behavior? Because it doesn’t bother them, that’s why. If they REALLY felt such altruistic feelings, they wouldn’t be okay with imposing these kinds of situations on people.

      One more thing: Look at the kinds of tests & “treatments” they do. I know I’ve said it before, but it’s the type of thing a serial killer would think up (and there is a major attraction to the medical profession because of a perceived control of life & death, as well as the general trust & camouflage- if someone just thinks “whatever the doctor does is fine” & that they “steer the ship,” that would make them much easier prey on top of everything else).

      I guess not being able to identify with someone like that might make it harder to really come to the conclusion that this is what they are, but you don’t need to have something in common with someone in order to be able to grasp their way of being. For myself, I do occassionaly have to remind myself of that fact (because you tend to look within & think “what would I do?” as a method of sizing things up). You’re not dealing with you- just keep that in mind. Sorry this was so long, but I wanted to hit a couple of different subjects.

  63. Moo says:

    Not giving accommodation for modesty except for religious or cultural reasons is wrong. The example being that a Muslim woman can demand female only staff but anyone else cannot. The doctors who do not care are the doctors who are trained to see the patient as their disease or a diseased body part not a whole person.

    “Hey there is a person attached to this vagina”

    • Jola says:

      Yes, Moo, you’ve put it right. You know, something’s come to my mind. Look, if a Jehova witness has the right not to agree to even save his/her life by blood transfusion – a very serious thing and decision to make up which stems from his/her faith, there should be no question at all in the case of women who are not only Muslim, but who are Buddhist, Christian, and of other creeds to ask for a female staff only. Actually, religion can’t be the most important issue because we all can ask for female staff (women) and male staff (men) regardless of our faith, just because we don’t wish to be exposed in front of the opposite sex while treatment or examination.

      In my birth plan in the UK, I put it clearly in writing that I wished only female midwives and female doctors – female professionals, and I had what I’d asked for. I loved the way they respected my choice. I haven’t heard a good opinion about doctors in the UK, but I must admit that childbirth and respect to the woman during labour and to her intimacy in the UK is wonderful. Though it was a childbirth and I didn’t think about embarrassement (in exruciating pain), I was treated with a huge respect to my psyche and body and the very thought of two midwives and my husband with me made me feel very happy. I just asked for the female staff – nobody opposed at all. Great Britain should be the best example of humane and intimate childbirth. This is not only my feeling about it.

      And just one thing – in the UK pregnancy care is the same as in Scandinavian countries, in Holland and Ireland – no vaginal exams during pregnancy and this is a great plus. There’s no stress of going to the midwife once a month.

    • Jola says:

      And what you wrote: “Hey there is a person attached to this vagina” should be said or written by every woman to make it clear to the medical staff. It should be written in a very bright colour, in capital letters on a sheet of paper and stuck to women’s clothes.
      I believe it would work.

    • Alex says:

      A point is that they made a decision about their lives, and that’s the way it went. They (medical personnel) are not confrontational about it when it’s religiously-based, but they are with everything else. There is a situation where they are backing off & not imposing their own influences.

      Personally, I think self-defense is a religiously-grounded reason for things. It’s not really a modesty concern, anyway- modesty has to do with not encouraging sexual desires. It’s not “arousing” things. It’s a self-defense issue, deflecting something of this nature being imposed on you. If a guy was in prison & someone was trying to throw him across a bunk, so he slung the guy to the floor & broke his neck- that wasn’t securing modesty. That’s not an immature thing. It’s not down-trodden or defective, either.

      Jola- I remember you posted about how they were trying to make all kinds of internal exams compulsory for women for work in Poland. This would have been a sanctioned iatrogenic attack. If the government decided that it was fine for a husband to smack his wife for being late with dinner, however- that would be a serious problem, no matter what color it was painted. It would be question of self-protection & not something to ridicule or marginalize.

      Not to be cruel, but I truly do believe that Americans, in general, would allow such a thing to be implemented & would get aggressive with anyone that took issue with the situation. I might be wrong about that, but they’ve had a hell of a track record for having a “what they say goes” type of stance with doctors. They don’t seem real concerned about cops, soldiers, TSA, school security guards, or anyone else for that matter. It’s got me very concerned that America will turn into a passive-aggressive version of the Third Reich.

  64. Moo says:

    Example of doctors only giving patients the information they want them to know or what suits them.

    Women found a small lump on her back about one inch from her spine. Goes to walk-in clinic, is referred to plastic surgeon to “clean out the cyst”. Waiting room is full of anxious women clutching X-rays. The surgeon looks at the lump, pokes it and then says it is a lipoma, a usually benign tumour. She can remove it for $400 but the scar will be noticeable and it might grow or not. Because it is considered “cosmetic” government health insurance will not pay for it to be removed or biopsied.

    Fast forward about seven years, the tumour starts growing slowly at first and exponentially. It is causing pain when the women sits, drives and it itches. She is worried because she does not have money for surgery. She has a new doctor. She goes there and very quickly she is given an ultrasound. The ultrasound confirms the size and that the tumour appears well differentiated (clue to being benign). Another surgeon is lined up and surgery happens covered by government insurance. The surgeon says there is 0.5% chance of cancer (compare with 0.0089% chance of cervical cancer in Canada). The tumour taken out is very large, fills a quart size container, loss of blood, six inch incision, large cavity in back.

    So the women finds out from the internet later that government insurance will only cover lipoma removal of at least 10 cm size in any dimension. No one told her that. She would have not let it get so large. Some tumour that has 0.5% chance of being cancer is not treated but all cervical dysplasia MUST be treated. So is squamous cell or glandular cell cancer more dangerous than lipid cell cancer?

    Probably this is in the wrong section.

    • Alex says:

      I don’t know if this is your point, but them not treating a tumor until it’s huge & acting like they care about getting to cervical cancer early at the same time. They have a red alert on something that isn’t even a common ailment, but an existing problem is disregarded. It’s the same theme of “cancer getting worse,” but they blow it off if it isn’t in a location they want to play with.

  65. Moo says:

    The point is that the lipoma tumour was not cancer but they could not be sure and cervical dysplasia is not cancer. The chance of the lipoma being cancer was 0.5%, the chance of cervical dysplasia (CIN 1-3) turning into cancer is 10-20% over many years.

  66. Ro says:

    Alex – Thanks for bringing up some good points, as always. You’re right that it is implicit deception, but it’s awful that everything gets stated as truth and facts when there is so much being hidden.

    “There’s never anything ‘fine with you’ is there?” That’s kind of the point I was making in feeling like something was bound to go wrong sooner or later. Everyone has health problems. No one is healthy. Whether or not those health problems are real or worth taking medication over, who knows? That’s the thing that always gets me. People get degrees in lots of fields. For example; scientists are very intelligent. Yet people are always questioning them and debating their theories. Or what about world-renowned philosophers who have studied in different fields for many years? Or even lawyers? It seems as though a medical degree is the only degree that protects a person from someone questioning their actions.

    What you said isn’t condescending – it’s true. At least for me. It’s something I need to work on; being more confrontational especially when it is necessary.

    It really is unfortunate that so much harm is done to people. I have to believe that there are less harmful or completely natural treatments somewhere to cure things. So much damage is done.

    The bit of advice; “you’re not dealing with you” was really fantastic and exactly what I needed to hear.

    • Alex says:

      You’re very welcome, Ro! I’m very glad that was helpful for you. That’s exactly why I post on here. I very much like to distribute the means of sharpening counteractive abilities, particularly with this type of subject. I don’t mean to brag, but I DO know some things that are a bit left-field (not impossible to figure out, but not exactly common knowledge).

      As for degrees, I’ve noticed something else that doesn’t get questioned: military rank. Not just in the military, but military personnel in civilian situations don’t really get questioned in any way. Speaking of military personnel: apparently things go the same way with regard to doctors & cops, just more directly. Always perplexed me why they would still care about the organization that aimed such things at them. Seems to me that engaging an enemy would be a large part of that occupation, anyway.

      There’s also a lot of ass-kissing toward people in the military, too. Trying to demonstrate what a good person they are by fawning over the soldiers, because “they went to war to protect us.” The idea isn’t a bad thing, but they hold them in that esteem no matter what happens & that IS a bad thing. There’s also lots of trying to absorb their abilities by acting like they’re one of them. On top of that, these peopel always sympathize with them because they figure that “they don’t really want to be here” & “they’re only following orders.” Doesn’t make any sense, since that doesn’t actually change the content of the situation.

  67. I am looking to expand the web site for Sexual Misconduct By Doctors’ web site (http://www.sexualmisconductbydoctors.com) to include links to news articles about doctors who have sexually abused patients in other countries outside the US. We already have a list for the US. We will need financial support. I was wondering if some of you could donate to Medical Patient Modesty to support this project. You can donate at http://patientmodesty.org/donate.aspx.

    Misty

  68. Sue: It is possible to donate anonymously especially if you donate via credit card. Look at how we have one anonymous donor already at http://www.gofundme.com/patientmodesty. You would need to donate money before December 15th if you want the money to go to MPM before the end of 2013. People can also donate by mailing a check (see http://patientmodesty.org/donate.aspx for more information). I really want to add Canada to the database since there have been so many cases of doctors abusing patients in Canada.

    Alex: We really need $500-$1,000 for this particular project.

    Misty

  69. ColeyX says:

    Sorry about this being a little long, but I wanted to ask about a recent bad experience.

    I work full-time as a model and was recently accepted by a high profile UK modelling agency. A few weeks ago, myself and a few of the other girls at my agency were hired by a company for a big shoot on location abroad. It was a 7 day trip and everything was paid for, including travel insurance, but we had to pass a mandatory physical before being cleared to go. I wasn’t bothered and I certainly wasn’t going to miss out on this opportunity just because of an inconvenience.

    So I went to the doctor’s office that the insurance company had picked. Most of the appointment was fine, just the usual health questions, took my blood pressure, checked my ears, nose & throat etc. Then he asked me to take my top off, so he could check my heart and lungs. I was expecting this, so I didn’t hesitate.

    But before he started, he told me to take my bra off as well. I was a little surprised since I didn’t think that was necessary. When I asked why, he said he would need to place the stethoscope under my left breast for a hearing at the apex. I felt uncomfortable but what he said sounded okay so I did it. First he put the scope above my heart and listened. I was already feeling a little weird when he then lifted my left breast with his hand and placed the scope below it. He didn’t even ask my permission to touch me! I was really nervous so my heart was racing, and I knew he could hear it, which felt quite embarrassing. Then he checked my lungs from the back and placed his hand on my shoulder while he listened, which felt a little weird as well. I didn’t like the amount of times he tried to make eye-contact either.

    The worst part came next. He told me to raise my arm so he could give me a clinical breast exam. I was pretty shocked since I hadn’t raised any such concerns. I said that I hadn’t noticed anything unusual in that area but he said, in no uncertain terms, that it was compulsory for the physical. He then examined both my breasts – WITHOUT gloves on. I must have been topless for almost 10 minutes in total before he let me put my clothes back on and finished the appointment.

    I know this may sound like I’m overreacting, but I genuinely felt violated. When I asked some of the other girls about their physical, they all said their doctors (different to my one) listened to their heart with their bra on and didn’t perform a breast exam. Don’t mean to sound egotistical but I can’t help but think that the fact I’m an attractive young woman played a role in what he made me do. I’m used to being scantily clad for my job (I’ve got over 25,000 twitter followers through my modelling) but I think he took advantage of me, knowing I needed him to pass me on the physical. It was probably the most humiliating experience of my life. I just felt so powerless.

    Has anyone ever been in a similar situation before? Is it worth filing a complaint?

    Thanks

    • Karen says:

      Sorry to hear about this horrible ordeal. This does not sound like you are overreacting at all, that creep has groped you, and he should be held responsible, just like a man should be held responsible who gropes women on the tube or anywhere. Just because he is a doctor he does not have a free pass to do as he pleases with anyone, how dare he.
      What I think worth is, beyond filing the complaint, spreading the word to anyone who listens- please warn other models who could be taken advantage of, the other patients of the molester, even mention it on your twitter- you would do a service for the public, by counteracting the insidious propaganda that no doctors are ever sexual predators. The more media exposure such cases receive, the more savvy medical consumers become, and the molesters stand less chance.

    • Alex says:

      Overall, a situation is what it consists of. Any interface with a sexual area as a product of someone else’s decision-making is an attack. I mean, if a doctor poisoned someone with a needle, that’s still murder (it’s just called an “iatrogenic attack” at that point- fancy term for attacking someone with a medical methodology). Properties don’t change because of designation, basically.

      I HAVE heard of scams involving passports & the overall strategy is to try to enforce an impression. It’s not actually a requisite, but they “inform” someone that it is & try to act accordingly (just like when something isn’t legally sanctioned, but whoever it is “applies influence” anyway). Keep in mind: a requisite CAN be dissolved. Saying something lawyer-ish like “Your mandate is abrogated” when they say “But this is mandatory” can be a hell of a show-stopper. Don’t be fooled by an appearance of confidence, either- they usually get believed so it’s easy for them to look that way (even when they know they’re legally unsupported).

      You’re not overreacting at all & I absolutely think it’s worth filing a complaint. Using coercive tactics to impose something of this nature is an attack. Just to say it beforehand: They don’t have an avenue of attack with policies. What that means is that they don’t add something into “their way of doing things” & it becomes non-antagonistic. They don’t get to attack people with their policies, basically.

      A point worth mentioning is that if someone were to say “Let me play doctor on you or you’re fired,” that is sexual harassment- plain & simple. If someone threatened to kick someone out of their apartment if they didn’t sleep with them, that’s a coercive attack. Different variations, same theme. Some people talk a big game, but what are they going to say?: “What happens ISN’T what occurs,”? Not really an accurate point.

    • Alice (Australia) says:

      Coley, you have a very substantial reason to feel violated. Filing a complaint is a good idea.

      Unfortunately, many companies demand their employees to go through health checks knowing that the person really wants that job, which is blackmail and violation on its own. If the job does not involve heavy physical labor or doesn’t put the lives of others in dependence of the employee’s health (e.g. pilots), there should be no need for a physical at all.

      In any case, breast exams or gynecological exams should not be a requirement for any job!

      If an insurance company wants to cover its greedy ass at the person’s expense, they should give the person an option to sign a waiver if the person would rather go on a 7-day photo-shoot trip uninsured than be sexually abused or raped by a dishonest doctor. But, unfortunately, nobody cares what the person wants. So it may be very helpful to get a comprehensive list of what exactly the examination consists of before seeing a doctor. In this case, a sexual predator in a white coat won’t be able to lie to you that breast or gynecological exam is mandatory.

    • mwyper@dermatec.net says:

      As a pretty/dainty gal myself I NEVER see male docs. Never. He asked you to take your brassier off to get a heart beat? RED FLAG #1. Took 10 minutes. RED FLAG #2. Checked you for breast cancer? What are like 60 years old?? WTF? RED FALG #3. Did he check for heart cancer, lung cancer, throat cancer while he as at it>>? You are not overreacting at all. I do not know what happened in that office, only you and if you feel violated–we’ll–that’s your answer. I was HIT BY A CAR with 2nd degree burns all over my arms and hands and the doctor taking my vitals didn’t ask me to take my bra off—totally not needed. EWE, what a sick sick sick man. I am so sorry. :(

    • ladyprotips says:

      Okay, I’m just going to say as someone involved in healthcare: do to the positioning of the heart, moving your breast actually was clinically legit. He completely should have asked first, but that is a real thing. That’s why, in female patients, it’s better to listen to the heart while she’s lying down-the breasts move out of the way on their own. He also could have just sort of nudged your breast up with the stethoscope if that makes sense. But having you get completely topless to listen to your heart? Nope, creepy. And as far as the breast exam, yes, they are generally done without gloves on. None of the OBs I’ve worked with (male or female) wear gloves during a breast exam. But he shouldn’t have pressured you, and it is in no way legit to require a breast exam for a job. Hell, the WHO states that manual palpitation of the breasts, either by a clinician or the patient herself, is useless in preventing breast cancer. By the time it can be felt in a breast exam, it’s probably all over and is too late. This is why women over 50 who want to undergo breast cancer screening should only be offered mammograms.

      I disagree with a lot of what is said on this site about male OBs. I have worked with several, my gynecologist is a male, and my uncle was a gynecologist. I intern with my own gynecologist, and I can honestly tell you that he got no pleasure from examining women’s vaginas. If I were to come up with a problem that needed to be evaluated via pelvic exam, I would have no qualms about having him do it, as long as the exam was actually necessary. I can also say that he tries really hard to avoid extra exams. If a woman has already come in that year but has some other problem, he tries really hard to keep the evaluation external. If a woman has never been sexually active, he straight up refuses to do an annual exam, and if she has problems then he exhausts every external option he has before turning to internal methods. He also doesn’t require an exam for birth control, and was horrified when I told him about that.

  70. Mary says:

    ColeyX if you read various boards like I have over the years you will hear stories of doctors doing different exams depending on the age and attractiveness of the patient. It’s quite common. These women are aware that they have been abused because they compare notes with their friends or relatives. For example, one doctor of a small country town used to tell all the young women of one family that he needed to perform a breast exam but he would never ask the older mothers or grandmothers even though age is a risk factor for breast cancer. Performing a breast exam without gloves can be necessary as I have read doctors say they cannot palpitate very well with gloves. But basically how was a breast exam a requirement for your job? It wasn’t. If it was me, I would be taking this further. He sexually abused you.

  71. Moo says:

    Google stethoscopes and clothing.

    Yes sometimes the heart murmur cannot be heard over heavy clothing in a noisy area. However if you were wearing some light layer such as a tshirt there is not much problem using a stethoscope over it. Even slipping the instrument under clothing is fine without removing clothing. There was no need to remove your top or bra. A breast exam was totally inappropriate.

  72. ColeyX says:

    I really want to report it but I’m not sure what path to take. Should I report it to the administrators at that particular hospital or take it directly to the General Medical Council?

    I’ve read some stories about admin staff basically dismissing complaints regarding healthcare providers because such cases are complicated and time consuming. Taking it to the GMC seems the best option, ultimately it’s them that will be responsible for deciding if he’s punished or not anyway.

    But the whole process seems so daunting. I hate the idea of him getting away with this. But I also hate the thought of going through all the litigation, all my friends and family finding out about what happened, and then just losing the case anyway. Ultimately it’s probably just going to be my word against his.

    The scariest part is the prospect of explaining the whole incident and how violated and vulnerable I felt, to a group of skeptical lawyers & admin staff. I can already imagine them all rolling their eyes at me.

    He knew I was a model as well – because I filled out my occupation on a form. I’ve been in lots of magazine shoots in the UK and I keep getting this sickening feeling that after I left, he googled my name, found some pictures, showed them to his friends and told them that he got to touch my breasts. Even the thought of it makes me so angry!

    Thanks so much everyone for the support.

    • Alex says:

      Why not just go around all of that & go to a medical malpractice lawyer? Not to pat myself on the back, but the stuff I said on my post to you would make a good legal defense in court. When it’s “homed in on” that dead-center, it’s pretty hard for them to bullshit their way out of it. The medical personnel, themeselves might not be such a good idea. You mentioned them rolling their eyes (and they probably would). This is the type of thing they like, but they can’t very well say “I know it’s a problem, but I like problems”- so they make it out to not be a problem overall (and reality would, basically, have to take a coffee break for that to be true).

      You being a model doesn’t entitle him to act at his discretion. If it’s still rape if someone attacks a hooker, the same theory applies to groping models. I only mention this because sometimes the idea that you showing yourself off generates a situation of negated self-determination (it’s not up to you what happens, because of you consensually doing something in a different situation that somehow runs along the same lines).

      Don’t just “take the hit” in order to do what you want. It’s good that you’re not being bullied into not living your life, but letting them do whatever they want so you can do something you want isn’t exactly a success. Think about it: they’re steering the situation in that case- that’s the exact problem you had in the first place, isn’t it? Don’t know if that’s what you meant & I don’t mean to tell you what to do, just trying to point out a strategic loophole. It’s a hell of a snag to hit if things go as bad as they’ve already gone- there’s nothing to say they wouldn’t try for worse (and a lot of the things they “suggest” to women also have a massive amount of risk & inaccuracy, as do the things they lead to- different subject, but I figured I should mention it since it could get aimed at you).

    • Mary says:

      He probably did. I read somewhere on the www a son telling the story that he received a text from his father, a doctor, saying “I just got to do a breast on a famous sports illustrated model”.
      Do me a favour, warn all of your model friends to stay away from male doctors. They are not to be trusted.

  73. ColeyX says:

    Karen,

    I agree completely with the analogy about being groped on the tube or the street. Two years ago I was walking home in the evening when I felt someone grab my bum. I was shocked but he just turned away and literally ran off. That felt bad but honestly, this was far worse. At least with the guy on the street I was able to shout at him and I could have called the police (which I would have if he hadn’t run away so quickly). This time, I had to just sit there and let it happen. It was more humiliating because he had all the control.

    I thought about tweeting about this but I’m scared that it could be considered libel. Then he could sue me for slandering him, after he violated me, how perverse is that?!

    To be honest, I really don’t want people to know about what he subjected me to. I’ve only spoken to a few people about this because every time I explain it to someone, it feels like he’s victimising me again.

  74. ColeyX says:

    Alice,

    When he said the breast exam was compulsory, it didn’t feel right at all. It seems a little ambiguous, but from what I’ve read, they’re not really a standard part of a ‘physical’. The other girls on the trip didn’t have one, which seems very important. It was stupid of me not to have researched what would be done beforehand, but I never really thought about it.

    He never even asked me if I’d like a nurse in the room. It didn’t even cross my mind until after I left. The whole thing was so embarrassing that I just wanted to get out of there as quickly as possible.

    You’re right, signing a waiver should be an option. But the next time I’ve got a work trip abroad (hopefully this happens), I’m still going to go, even if it means doing a medical, because I don’t want to allow myself to be indirectly affected by what he did to me. It feels like he’s beaten me once, I’m not going to let him keep winning by not doing what I want to do.

    • Alice says:

      Coley, you definitely should not allow creepy doctors like that one to stop you doing the job you like.

      But you may be able to avoid such heartache in the future either by insisting on seeing female doctors, or by obtaining a comprehensive description or the required examinations from people who send you to have the physical. They are sending you there, so they must know what it should consist of. Otherwise, next time some medical predator may say that a gynecological exam is required.

      Alternatively, if your employers don’t know what the physical involves and just demand you to have one because their insurer told them to demand it, you can confront the examining doctor (this will also eliminate the need to hassle you employer).

      For example, if the doctor says a breast exam is compulsory, ask him to show you the official list/guideline document where it says that it is required. If the doctor refuses to show you such document, tell him that since he has no documentary proof that an intimate exam is required, you have grounds to believe he made it up, that it amount to sexual abuse and therefore you will report his behaviour to the relevant authorities. After that, just see a different doctor for the physical, until you find a non-perverted doctor. This may take some stamina and extra time, but it will spare you heartache and psychological damage.

      From my own experience, doctors quickly back up once they see that the patient is well-informed, knows her rights and is willing to stand up for herself. Most medical predators prey on ignorance, confusion, shyness, fear and desperation. So, be firm and be prepared.

  75. ColeyX says:

    Mary,

    That story sounds awful. Bragging to your son about abusing your power and taking advantage of a vulnerable young woman? That boy will have some issues.

  76. ColeyX says:

    Alex,

    Thank you so much for the advice.

    I think using a medical claims solicitor would be the best option as well. But it’s hard to find a good one at a reasonable price. The no-win-no-fee types have a bad reputation here in the UK. Unfortunately, I can’t really afford a serious solicitor.

    About the model thing, I just meant that because there are lots of pictures/videos of me on the internet, he could have searched for them later and bragged, ‘Guess what I did to her?’. He was relatively young, late 20s or early 30s, so he seemed like the type who might. I didn’t mean that I was concerned about people thinking I ‘had it coming’ or anything – at least I hope no one would ever think that.

    • Alex says:

      You’re very welcome. I guess there aren’t any free-representation lawyers in the UK? I’m not entirely sure that there are any in the US, but I figured since there’s that court-appointed attorney if someone gets accused of something maybe there is one going in the opposite direction. You might be able to get some references from a battered women’s shelter or something like that- not the same thing, but maybe they’d have related information. Just make that clear right off the bat, because sometimes people get a little touchy (ex: “what happened to you wasn’t anywhere near comparable to what happened to me/us/them”).

      Filing a police report for “iatrogenic detriment” or “coercive attack through medicine” might work, but it might not go too far- for various reasons. Some of it might be that “your word against his” type of thing, but there are other factors. One thing is that quite a bit of their behavior mirrors that of doctors, officially & unofficially. For instance: just sorting things out can screw someone up for life, due to various interjected security & hygiene measures- if you catch my drift. A lot of people presume that that sort of thing only applies to people that are CONVICTED of something, but things like that get worked into just getting put INTO jail/prison/juvenille detention & plenty of times just getting “picked up”. Might be talking to someone that isn’t very sympathetic to your situation (or hospitable to you taking strides against it). It’s a bit of a coin-flip & I don’t know how the cops generally are in the UK, but I thought I should add that in as related information.

      A good idea for the future is to keep a phone recording things or maybe one of those “spy pens/watches/whatever” (which is something to watch out for, too- sometimes they like to hide cameras around the office or keep camera pens around their neck that look like normal dress pens/watches that look very normal/etc…).

      I got what you meant about being a model, I was just throwing that in pre-emptively. It’s a suprisingly frequent argument in America (the land of the free- well, not really). I get very aggravated at how people try to logically deduce that the situation is NOT what it consists of. Like they’re figuring out that the situation is “actually” different.

    • ADM (Canada) says:

      ColeyX, I’m sorry that happened to you. You can file a complaint against that Dr with the medical board. I don’t know what it’s called where you live. Here a complaint can be made online and you have to give your name if you want to follow up. There is no need for a lawyer. If you’re friends/coworkers are willing you could provide their names for evidence that a breast exam was not part of the physical and if possible the paperwork of what was really required as part of the physical. Do you have access to the report that he provided for the insurance clearance or even request his charts from your appointment. Procedure wise there is no need for the bra to be removed for listening to the heart and lungs. If he chartered that he performed a breast exam when it wasn’t a requirement and without your informed consent then he has incriminated himself.

    • Moo says:

      ok. You’re a victim and sure you are worried. No one is going to think well of a doctor who violates his patient confidentiality, not even his friends. These people tend to repeat their offenses until they get caught. He is digging his own grave.

      Just be aware that court records are public records. Not good for you if you are worried about exposure professionally unless you want that. There are other ways to get EVEN with someone. Just think about it.

  77. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Coley,
    In hearings before the medical board the complainant is usually described as Ms X, protecting her privacy. Check, that probably applies in the UK.
    I’m not surprised, if you’d been 25 or more it would have been pap test pressure.
    Women need to be very careful…some good advice here, I agree, request a female doctor, understand what may be included before the exam, challenge anything that is unacceptable or inappropriate. A clinical breast exam is not recommended in the UK for women of any age. He’d have a hard time justifying that exam to the Medical Council, that will be his stumbling block. He probably hasn’t mentioned it in his notes and will deny it ever happened, but complaints are a problem for predatory doctors, nurses etc, how does it look if a few complaints are sitting on your file from unrelated young women complaining about “compulsory” breast exams? It’s called similar fact evidence.
    Nothing is compulsory in the exam room, it’s your choice whether to have the exam/test and who does the testing/examining.
    There are lots of red flags here, your instincts are right.
    Interesting that doctors have no trouble listening to your heart with your bra in place if you’re older, but it seems to be an issue for some with young and attractive women. Telling….

    So sorry you’ve joined the huge number of women who’ve been abused in the consult room, most don’t complain and so these men carry on taking advantage, even a complaint that goes nowhere will send a strong message to this creep. Also, it’s an early warning that you can’t trust all doctors, this will protect you into the future.
    By the way, there have been recent cases of male doctors using mobile phones and pen cameras to take photos of women during pelvic exams etc. The undeniable fact is…almost all of these complaints relate to male medical personnel.

    We should all have an escape plan that we can activate when we’re uncomfortable in the exam room…you were ambushed in a situation where he had all the power. In future you could simply say, “breast exam, I’m sure that’s not required, I’ll check with the insurer and the Medical Board, so I’ll be refusing it today”….he’d probably back off then. Or, my GP tells me routine breast exams are not recommended anymore.
    Good luck, welcome to the forum.

    • Alex says:

      Great post, Elizabeth.

      I wonder why women don’t use any of those self-defense lessons? “Don’t you touch me (maybe followed by whatever insult)” would be useful, too. Really shows that the facade didn’t work. I wouldn’t ever suggest that someone see a requistite they didn’t want as valid. Someone says “This thing you have a problem with is a mandate” & they say “That has no value.” Sounds good (and is multi-functional).

      I guess maybe some women see it as wrong when they counteract these situations? But wouldn’t anyone trying to impose something like this see it as wrong for someone to work against? What are they going to do if someone tries to chase theme into a stairwell? Ask if they have permission to fight back & win?

      Not a reason to disregard right & wrong entirely, but I’d definitely see it as a reason for a “Good & Bad WOLF” style of ethics. Easier for men, but I’d think women have that “bird’s eye view” ability to help them out (like when someone does something & some else does something else & you see the alignment of the situation). It’s kind of like when characters in movies talk in the third person, you know what I’m talking about? I figure, if that’s what the problem is (feeling like the bad guy), then that would definitely point out that you’re not the bad guy. Altruism doesn’t produce ownership- so someone can’t act like you’re “wronging” them on that level, either.

  78. ColeyX says:

    ADM,

    I’m going to get in touch with the insurance company and ask if they can give me a copy of the medical report that they used to clear me for the insurance. Hopefully they will, I don’t see why not since it’s my report, but I have no idea how this kind of company operates. The other girls have been fantastic, they’ve all said that they will say they were not made to have breast exams – if it gets to that point. I’m very happy that I’ve got their support.

    Elizabeth,

    Trust me, after this I’m going to try and see female doctors whenever possible. I’d never really thought about it before. I’m only 21 and I’ve only ever seen a doctor on my own a couple of times before, so this kind of thing was never on my mind. It’s a shame that I had to learn the hard way at the hands of this creep!

  79. ColeyX says:

    I’ve drafted my complaint statement to submit directly to the hospital or to NHS England. I spoke on the phone to a manager at the hospital and he told me that I could submit it online anytime within 12 months of the incident, but I want to get this over and done with as soon as possible.

    But before I submit it, I want to ask you all about something.

    Some of you have already said that this could be worth taking to the police. I’ve asked about this on another forum and one poster was pretty clear that she feels my best option here is to go directly to the police and get them to investigate. It is possible that police involvement may force the hospital complaints administrators to take this more seriously than they otherwise might. But I’m scared that involving the police may seem like I’m being frivolous, that I’m ‘wasting their time’ etc, and that this perception could undermine my case.

    The main reason I’m unsure of approaching the police is that they’ll expect a very high level of proof before taking any real action. I realize that unless similar complaints have been made against this doctor before, it’s going to be incredibly hard to prove a criminal case against him. From doing some reading online, doctors who are brought to court are usually done so after having had numerous similar accusations made against them. If this doctor hasn’t got a bad history, it’s just going to be my word against his.

    My current plan is to submit my complaint within a few days to the hospital (maybe to NHS England instead, I don’t think it makes much difference). Hopefully I’ll be able to see the medical report at some point soon as well, presumably the hospital themselves will need it to investigate the complaint.

    But if people feel that going to the police straight away is a better option, I’m definitely willing to consider it.

    Thank you all again for the help you’ve given me so far. Your support means a lot.

    • Alex says:

      Cops can be very touchy about “people wasting their time,” but it also might add weight to your case. You might be able to feel the situation out first. Maybe talking to an attorney about what goes on (both under & over the table) with this would be a good idea. I guess that’s called a “consultation?” They seem to be able to find out background information about things pertaining to the case (like if the doctor has had complaints made about him in the past).

      You might be right about proof & all, but he might have had a few complaints made before. Someone one this site referenced finding out from the hospital if the doctor has had reports made about them (demanding information about their personnel, I guess). I’ve got to wonder if those complaints get trashed or what, though. That’s why I’d be a little uncertain about just using hospital route alone (they seem to be free to decide if there’s been any problem at all & what measures to take if so- which means THEY determine their own liability & that’s a conflict of interests). Maybe you can do both at the same time & explain it to the cops exactly like that- you want to add weight to your case so it’s not just brushed off or accomodated by the hospital.

  80. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Coley
    There is no doubt these matters come to a head quickly with police involvement. Our Medical Board did very little for decades allowing some horrible people to keep “practising” and they kept offending. Now they often have to play catch-up with the Police…and they’re forced to take action.

    Also, I doubt you’re his first victim. We had a dermatologist assaulting women here, doing internal exams under the guise of a skin check and he was taking photos with his phone. One young woman went to the Police and victims came out of the woodwork, all with the same story, completely naked for the check with an internal “exam”. He’s now sitting in prison where he belongs, but without her complaint to the police he’d still be abusing women. Some of these men are then placed on the sex offenders register and cannot return to medicine (as I understand it) or have restrictions placed on them, only seeing male patients etc.

    You could speak to the police (sound them out, you never know, they might already know this doctor and have been waiting for a similar complaint to arrive on their desk) and mention you also, plan to make a formal complaint to the Medical Council. They may want you to hold off until they seize your file, before he becomes aware of your complaint. You can imagine how this creep will feel with the police arriving at his surgery….now that evens up the power dynamic.
    Even if nothing comes of the complaint, this would have a major impact and teach him a valuable lesson….misuse a position of trust at your peril.
    For too long sexual assault in a medical setting has been viewed differently, why? In my opinion, it’s worse than the creep in the park, doctors have a duty of care and enjoy a position of trust.

    Also, this man then knows another complaint in the future would look bad, very bad.
    These men rely on our silence and they hope we’ll be intimated enough to say nothing or not to push it anyway….receive a quiet fob off, “he was being thorough” etc.
    Please keep us posted and great the other women are supporting you and happy to provide statements. Did any of them see Dr Creep?
    Also, I’d strongly urge you to read up on pap testing, enormous pressure will descend when you’re 25, you need to be ready. Let us know if you need some research material. Even if you want to screen, there are far better options than 3 yearly pap tests.
    You’re doing a great thing for other women by not allowing this man to get away with it scot free….and perhaps, it helps us to move on if we see some justice. No, he didn’t get away with it. It took me decades to let go of a couple of distressing experiences…and I think it was because the men got away with it, I didn’t take it further. (or was unable to…in one case a man persued me to my car and tried to attack me, I got away, but it was a terrifying experience that stayed with me for a long time)
    Some women never get over abuse…and often that’s medical abuse, the violation of trust and feeling powerless and vulnerable results in lasting psychological damage.
    Also, your complaint may make other women more aware and empowered..more might question and refuse routine breast exams, knowing they’re not recommended at any age.
    Good luck…we’re all behind you.

    • ColeyX says:

      Really sorry about the distressing experiences you’ve had before. I’m so happy that you were able to get over them.

      None of the other girls saw the same doctor I did. While that perhaps makes making a case against him harder, I’m really glad they didn’t. I wouldn’t want any of them to suffer the same kind of bad experience I did.

      I agree that this sort of behaviour is worse from medical professionals than creeps on the street for the very reasons you stated. I never realized how widespread this kind of pervy behaviour was by doctors. A few quick twitter searches reveal countless tweets by young women/girls (many of whom are still in school), regarding embarrassing moments at doctors’ appointments. One girl tweeted about how she was told to strip to the waist by a nurse, only for the doctor to ask her some questions and tell her to put her clothes back on! Another girl tweeted how, at a physical, she was told to strip down to her thong and then made to bend over and touch her toes. How does bending over provide any medical insight?!

      There were countless more and the vast majority of these women were young and attractive. The particularly weird thing was that most of these comments were tweeted humorously. Very few seemed bothered about having been potentially violated, almost like stripping for a male doctor regardless of your complaint was simply par for the course.

    • Alex says:

      There’s a lot of those kinds of stories. It seems like maybe those women are voicing their issue with it in a way that won’t get them “emotionally smacked in the face.” Other women are suprisingly ruthless about a doctor imposing their decisions on someone (but, oddly enough, if a husband punches his wife in the face- that’s an attack & it doesn’t matter where it came from, even though it’s a lesser level of attack). You’d think she’d get support from another woman, at least- but I guess it depends where you are (some countries are not really autonomy-bolstering).

      Other women seem to think that there’s something immature, down-trodden, or otherwise defective about having bodily autonomy & self-protectiveness or simply seeing a situation compositionally. Seeing a situation for what it consists of is a real screw-up, isn’t it? A lot of these women seem to be perfectly fine with anything that happens to them as long as it isn’t a slap in the mouth & a dinner order. Same with what gets aimed at their friends, family, or children. Tell her she’s not allowed to do something because she’s a woman & she’ll flip out. But tell her that someone else is allowed to do as they choose to her because she’s a woman & that fine with her.

  81. Mary says:

    I agree with Elizabeth. The only reason why male doctors have got away with this sort of thing for so long is because women have gone to medical boards instead of the police with their complaints. The people behind the medical boards are doctors and their modus operandi has always been to protect their own. Hence, complaints never get anywhere. You have something going for you, you are a model, you will not be treated as a delusional woman if you put in a complaint. I cannot for the life of me see how this doctor is going to be able to justify a breast exam for a modelling assignment! I think a lot of cases can be hard to prove but in your case a young model gets a breast exam while other models don’t get one from their doctor is pretty strong case.

    • Yes Elizabeth and Mary, well put. I had posted this article about a medical technician being charged with sexual assault earlier but it’s worth a re-post here as it applies to ColeyX:

      “The charges allege inappropriate medical exams at Ontario military recruitment sites in Thunder Bay and London from 2003 to 2009.

      Wilks used the medical exams to see and touch the women’s breasts, and let them think it was part of the examination, which was “totally dishonest,” D’Auteuil said.

      “The court found no reason to disbelieve any of these women.”

      Wilks testified on his own behalf, but d’Auteuil said he was not believable.

      The judge accepted evidence there was no need for the women to have undergone breast exams at their age. No such exam is required for women under the age of 40.

      “He did that for his own personal sexual gratification,” said d’Auteuil. http://www.cbc.ca/news/ex-military-medic-convicted-of-sex-assault-for-bogus-breast-exams-1.2428708

  82. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Which makes you wonder how so many doctors get away with doing routine breast exams, for example, when a woman asks for the Pill?
    I’ve read Reports of the Medical Board, they look at the doctor’s conduct….was the exam a clinical requirement? Was it necessary?
    Which says to me all the doctors that lead women to believe it’s necessary or just do the exam would be in trouble if the woman complained. The casual reach for the female body will stop when it becomes unsafe. Doctor’s don’t tack a quick check of the testicles onto a consult for the flu…routine breast exams should be viewed the same way. I believe we got to this position because a male dominated profession could do as they pleased with our bodies…and the Medical Board blocked any trouble-makers making complaints.
    You still hear doctors say, “I do a routine breast exam, I was taught that way”….this should be addressed, it says, I’m out of date and incompetent and violating the bodily privacy of my patients.
    Also, predators have thrived in an environment where informed consent and consent itself is ignored for women and where a casual approach is taken with the female body…a predator is then protected and can confidently mislead or coerce women into pap tests and breast exams, this gives him great access. Screening targets and target payments encourage and protect this conduct… that’s why we hear of so many women being ambushed in the consult room, there with an earache and ending up on the exam table having a pap test. Some of these doctors are chasing targets and payments, some would be predators hiding behind the program and it’s dismissal of informed consent/consent makes it easy to take advantage, others arrogantly assert they know what’s best..all of these doctors are a threat to our health and well-being, the only time a pap test should occur is when a woman gives her informed consent. (currently only possible if you do your own reading)
    No one has a right to touch us without our informed consent. I’ve always felt like a guardian, protecting my body and mind from the medical profession. Also, avoid any doctor who is controlling, rude etc. it’s so important to find a respectful doctor. A doctor using a word like “compulsory” should send up a red flag, nothing is compulsory in the exam room. A blood pressure test is a clinical requirement for the Pill, but you could still refuse. Compulsory suggests we have no choice, like paying taxes, and medical care does not fall into that category.

    • Alex says:

      You know, I’ve been wondering: Why is it there’s such restraint with regard to retaliation to doctors? Someone’s a sex offender, but they’re still allowed to practice- there’s just some restrictions. What kind of trustability is there with them? Maybe they just switch trends & targets.

      If someone so much as steals a car, they go to prison (which is not proportionate, but that’s part of the point). If a doctor molests a patient, they get fired (maybe). All the things that prison consists of (officially& unofficially) is not really proportionate to most things, but I’d say going after someone on this level is something that matches up pretty well.

      One thing I’d suggest & I don’t mean to be critical, but definitely don’t leave room for “required.” It doesn’t matter if someone’s consent is informed or not, anyway- but you have a conflict of interest where someone medical is determining whether someone is informed (both in terms of judgement & in terms of providing information). There’s really nothing to say that they’d be honest about things, overall (even when there IS information that says one thing, if it contradicts what they’re inclined toward…).

      “At your own risk” and signing waivers isn’t really the M.O. of M.D.s. Even if there was a risk of something, that’s the person’s own decision to make (IF there’s any risk at all, because there’s plenty of false trails in medicine- oddly enough, they lead away from anything being medicine’s fault).

      By-the-way: Look up the word “clinical.” It’s pretty much the opposite of what you’d be looking for in health care. Seems that the term IS correct, though.

  83. Moo says:

    As strange as it seems when I was in my twenties, breast exams were almost at every consult. I thought that was normal. I did not like it but I did know any better. I did not know that I was being sexually assaulted.

    We were taught that we had to “put” up with that. Paps and pelvic exams for birth control as well. Even now I know women who think that you “have” to have Pap tests and manual breast exams because they “prevent” cancer. I blame other women for the abuse because either they never told me “if you go to that clinic this is going to happen” or they just said it was something that we had to go along with. It is rather the same as other women telling you that your husbad or boyfriend beating you up is all yourr fault. I an sick of the abuse and other women ENABLING abuse.

    If it takes gathering evidence and going to police then do that to make it stop.

    The police however sometimes have an issue with concent. You might consent to a medical exam. It does not mean that you cannot withdraw your consent to any part of the exam at anything. It is the same type of consent required for sexual activity. Or it should be. If at any time a person says the sex should stop, then consent is withdrawn. Or if a person is unconscious then they cannot give consent but medical procedures are allowed to some extent. I do not think that giving patients practice pelvic exams when they are awaiting unrelated surgeries is acceptable at all. So it is unclear sometimes about how consent is given or not given.

    The problem might be that you gave consent to a breast exam but only under false pretences that it was required and you were coerced. Like someone who was coerced unto sex for getting a job or a rental unit. It is however an abuse of power and some type of fraud.

  84. ColeyX says:

    Hey everyone,

    Just thought I’d let you know that I officially submitted my complaint online today – directly to the hospital.

    Hopefully I should get some kind of acknowledgment sometime tomorrow, with a more detailed response by the end of the week.

    It feels good to have just taken some action. Hopefully he gets a fright when he hears about the complaint! It’s probably the only revenge I’ll get (apart from him just having the complaint on record against him) so I’m hoping it’s a significant fright!

  85. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Good for you Coley, I hope he gets a fright too, a BIG gut-wrenching fright.
    Routine breast exams are not recommended in the UK for women of any age, end of story. I can’t see how he could justify his conduct, I suspect he’ll deny he did a breast exam.
    The hospital might try to fob you off or deal with it in-house, taking no real action, are you going to send a copy of your complaint to the relevant official body as well?
    The fact the other women saw different doctors doesn’t matter much, but the fact there was no mention of breast exams is important….confirming they’re not recommended, necessary and certainly not “compulsory”…and were not mentioned by the insurer. The use of the word “compulsory” is important, IMO, he intended to back you into a corner, pressure you into accepting the exam. Predatory conduct, in my opinion…
    Actually, I was thinking if an American insurer mentioned a breast exam (the routine breast exam is still promoted there) and the exam was conducted in the UK, they’d probably have to delete the clause or obtain express informed consent from the patient, “this exam is not recommended, it carries risk and is of no proven benefit etc.”.
    Pleased you’re feeling better already. Now who has the power!

  86. I wanted to let everyone know that I got an email from a male doctor who criticized my article, Tips For Female Patients To Prevent Sexual Abuse In Medical Settings (http://sexualmisconductbydoctors.com/femaletips.aspx) today.

    Here’s what he said to me in the email:

    I noticed your tips like “never go to a male gynecologist”, “never go to a male GI doctor for colonoscopy”,”never let a male EKG technician” etc.

    Here’s a few thoughts:

    I would like to make some recommendations on how you can present your information in a more scientific and accurate manner.

    (1) Instead of saying generalizing and saying things like “many doctors” and “nearly half of all doctors” or “all male doctors” etc., It would be far more accurate and scientific to present the exact percentage of male medical doctors found guilty of sexual misconduct.
    ** Give percentages based on reliable data **
    — For example according to a 2012 census there are 578,478 licensed male physicians in the USA and 264,846 licensed female physicians in the USA.

    Next count up all the cases where a male and female was found guilty of sexual misconduct, do the division and report the percentage on your web site.

    Question: Is it possible that the percentage is less than 1% of male doctors were ever found guilty of sexual misconduct? Do the statistics and present the information.

    (2) Instead of saying chaperone’s do not help and something might happen too quickly etc — please provide some verifiable examples , and then do the statistics again. Figure out the total number of papsmears done every single year by male physicians and female physicians. The number should be over a million for each. Then divide just the complaints by that and present the statistics. It is possible that less than a tiny fraction of a percent had instances of sexual misconduct.

    (3) you mentioned that not all the stories referenced are necessarily accurate. Perhaps you can put up a list of inaccurate stories so that people can know what not to do.

    There are some young ladies out there who are actually in the news for lying. You can read about one story from england at this link http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/6840553/Gynaecologist-attacks-false-allegations-after-sexual-complaint-withdrawn.html

    I think it would be a smart idea to add that to your website so that people will know that not all accusations are true.

    I believe that you will find that after getting the data , instances of sexual misconduct total services provided every year is less than a tiny fraction of a percent. — and that research would show that it is incorrect to generalize to all male medical doctors.

    • Alex says:

      Why doesn’t he find statistics on how many doctors have prevented sexual (or any other) abuse? I guess that would be a pretty damn low number.

      Another point is that he keeps bringing up whether something is “verified” or not, but that largely hinges on a conflict of interest, doesn’t it? Medical organizations calling something for what it is when it doesn’t look good for them? There a lot of determinations that are based entirely on in-house review. Cronyism isn’t just for the White House & if someone’s cut from the same cloth (and, I believe, that’s the point of certification) they won’t be too likely to go after things like that. Not really of a couteractive mindset.

      The point that things aren’t always reported is another thing. Not really a hospitable environment when someone refuses something to begin with, so why would something being reported be met any differently? It wouldn’t be. That’s complaining to the source about the things it causes.

      Someone might not have been found guilty of anything, but that doesn’t mean whatever situation didn’t happen. Interestingly enough, baseless lawsuits & wrongful convictions are something they ARE aware of. I guess there’s nothing wrong that comes from them.

    • Moo says:

      When you are victim of a CRIME you do not want to be told that you are just a statistic. For example a certain number of women are sexually assaulted by strangers. Statically one particular woman might come in contact with any number of strangers per week that do not sexually assault her. Is she supposed to feel alright then that only a small percentage of strangers or even just one raped her?

      Trying to ignore or minimize the problem is wrong. No one should get blamed for being sexually assaulted.

      There can be many reasons why a sexual assault accusation can be withdrawn. Sorry I did not read the article yet.

      Any health worker (male or female) should encourage women to bring their own chaperone (even their partner) at any time to protect themselves for being accused. If they find that inconvenient, then they should seek another profession or just see male patients. I might note that some male patients might also want chaperones to be present.

      This would not totally prevent crime but greatly reduce it. It might also prevent predators from entering certain professions as they know they would likely be caught.

    • Misty, the male doctor who criticized your article was asking you to provide evidence in a “more scientific and factual manner”. What that doctor probably knew was that there are no statistics to support the claims of sexual abuse committed by doctors because IT HAS NOT BEEN RESEARCHED. If you read Sanda Roger’s article: Sexual Abuse by Health Care Professionals: The failed promise of reform, you will discover the difficulties in determining the actual numbers of cases of sexual assault by doctors.

      A self-survey was done in the U.S., where doctors were sent surveys they could fill out and return anonymously. Of 1,000 physicians, 5 – 13% self-disclosed they had engaged in sexual contact or sexual assault of their patients.

      What is know is that cases of sexual abuse are vastly under reported. Certain groups of women are at higher risk for sexual assault, such as women with disabilities, and of those women, 63% reported being sexually assaulted by someone in the health care system:
      “Women with disabilities who are institutionalized at higher risk of being victimized by sexual assault, more than half of their victimizers are those in the health care system. He cites a 1990 study of women in psychiatric institutions, which revealed that:
      … 37% of those interviewed had been sexually assaulted in adulthood;[93] in another 1986 study on women with disabilities, 63% indicated that while they were in an institution, they had been assaulted by someone in the health care system. According to the Canadian Panel on Violence Against Women, the ‘complete powerlessness in institutional settings [also] leaves [elderly women] highly vulnerable to sexual and physical abuse’.” http://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/rp-pr/csj-sjc/ccs-ajc/rr06_vic2/p3_4.html

      The incidence of sexual abuse by health care providers rivals levels found in the church and other major institutions: http://clericalwhispers.blogspot.ca/2012/03/medic-sex-abuse-worse-than-church.html

      Here is a recent article on the subject: http://voxxi.com/2013/03/25/sexual-abuse-by-doctors-common/

    • Sue,

      It is impossible for us to have full statistics for doctors who sexually abuse patients. I have gotten a number of emails from women who were sexually abused by doctors, but most of them felt intimidated to report the sexual abuse. For example, I tried to help one college girl to report sexual abuse by her male doctor at the infirmary, but she was afraid to report it. Her mom also encouraged her to not report it because she believed the doctor was just being thorough.

      I can certainly see why sexual abuse in medical settings is much higher than the church. Women take their clothes off in medical settings for medical exams,. Women are less likely to take their clothes off in a church.

      Misty

      • Misty, yes it is impossible and the numbers of articles on the subject are few and far between. It is an issue that is kept well hidden. In my own experiences, the only times I have experienced sexual abuse has been at the hands of male doctors. I never suspected a doctor could do such things though – until it happened to me. I think most women probably don’t suspect a doctor could be guilty of sexual abuse.

        Sexual assault of women in health care goes beyond individual cases. The propaganda promoting pap testing establishes a platform for all women to be at risk of sexual abuse at the hands of health care providers. The fear mongering sets women up to believe they need to be pap tested. No doctor in my experience will tell women that cervical cancer is rare and no doctor will tell women that they have a choice. Pap tests are never presented as a choice. Women are led to fear a rare cancer, believe pap tests will be “life saving”, and are not given truthful information or a choice. With this as the base for pap testing, then a penetrative and intimate vaginal exam IMO is a form of sexual abuse.

    • Alex says:

      Sue- The term for that is “mental vitiation.” They deceive some, thus it’s not them making their own decisions. They con someone into believing that these problems are much more common than they actually are, that these are both safe & effective methods of detecting these issues, and do not mention any risks, inaccuracies, or alternatives to these tests. Deception vitiates consent- that’s an important thing to keep in mind.

      Mentally undermining someone’s autonomy is another point. It’s made out to be defective or immature for someone to have a problem with the mechanics of these situations. It’s not physically wrestling with them, but it’s trying to kick the chair out from under them mentally.

      All of this as a product of someone else’s decision-making is an attack. That’s pretty plain & simple. As a means to an end, it would still most likely be problematic due to the dynamics of the situation- even if everything worked as advertised & there was no compulsion taking place. Someone else acts as though that gets a “failing grade” & is somehow “vetoed” out of existence- but reality is not formed by recognition. Their argument is that something ceases to exist, despite it’s EXISTENCE. I know I’ve mentioned this before, but it comes up A LOT in medical situations. Intellectual negation does not generate a transformative influence on the situation.

      I guess you could lump all these things together as social engineering or maybe just subtle tactics. Either way, they push these situations on people & then say “They’re free to make their own decisions.” Except for all the deception, coercion, and other tactics to shoulder someone into things. I guess they “only want what’s best for them” & these people have no right to decide what that is or override the doctor in any way.

    • mary says:

      Misty, you could always point him to the book on Amazon “America’s Dumbest Doctors” written by someone who worked in health care for 30 years and saw it all first hand. But the best bit you could show this male doctor is from a review of the book on Amazon

      “The book is a collection of stories, jokes, statistics and other tidbits relating to the medical profession. Interestingly, the bad or questionable behaviors that see the light of day through this book are overwhelmingly committed by male doctors. The author says, “Every attempt to uncover female physician gaffes has been made…..Sadly, we just couldn’t find very many.” (Note to self: use female doctors whenever possible to greatly increase the chances of avoiding a bad apple.) “

  87. Karen says:

    What a revolting sense of entitlement. No need to REASON, to quote statistics, debate methodologies, a patient-doctor interatcion is not about publishing some academic paper! No means no, no ifs, no buts, and by the way, his argument is skewed, sexual harrassement is notoriously underreported, no one knows how many pap smears are exactly done, etc, I guess he just wants you to feel like a dumb little patient.

    • Alex says:

      That hits a bull’s-eye, Karen! They DO feel entitled to review someone’s decisions & to disregard them at their discretion. They also act like someone’s pushing them around to counter theirs- like it’s bullying them for someone to comport their own medical situation.

      Medical quality is determined by patient satisfaction, not academic value. That is exactly what “beneift to the patient” is referencing: the positive or negative effects that a situation has on the patient. The only one that can know this for sure is the patient, themselves.

      “No means no” only applies to bathrooms & stairwells, as far as they’re concerned. This only applies to someone forcing things that would typically take place in a relationship of some kind. Although, if someone were to forcibly “play doctor” on someone, that would absolutely be assualt- regardless of gender, occupation, or designation.

  88. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Statistics would be unreliable anyway, sexual misconduct usually goes unreported, of the women who believe they were assaulted in the exam room, how many make an official complaint? Reading through forums, I get the impression most women don’t report these things. (and doctors know that) After a bad experience with a doctor, women might avoid that doctor or all doctors, might insist on a female doctor in future, and may carry trauma for years. I think many cope by pushing the experience out of their mind or telling themselves they were mistaken.
    I agree also, that coercing and misleading women into pap testing, pelvic or breast exams is an assault. The system exposes women to risk by ignoring informed consent and consent itself.

    • Elizabeth (Aust),.

      I agree with you. Most women never bother to report sexual abuse. One of my friends is in her 40s now and she is still traumatized by how she was sexually abused by a male gynecologist when she was 14 or 15. She has some lasting emotional damage which is very sad.

      Misty

  89. Mary says:

    Yep Misty that’s the one. Not only does the book show that male doctors are more likely to sexually assault their patients, but they are also more likely to commit all sorts of other crimes as well. I think it’s about time the medical profession stops pretending that there is no difference between male and female doctors because clearly there is.

  90. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Why should medicine be any different? Most sexual assaults are committed by men, full stop. Doctors also, have more opportunity to assault and take advantage…and shape it as thorough medical care. Every time I hear of a young woman being pressured to have an opportunistic pap test, you have to wonder, I certainly do…a pap test provides Intimate access, places the woman in a vulnerable position, provides the opportunity to view up close and to touch. The bonus…they get target payments as well. When the system ignores informed consent and ofen consent itself,, that gives predators free reign.

    • Alex says:

      Exactly right on everything, Elizabeth! It’s not going to change just because the situation moves into a different arena. It’s like “it’s not an insult if someone has an accent.” It’s the same thing at a different angle.

      I’d add in that it IS possible for a woman to be a lesbian or bisexual (or just hate someone for being prettier, younger, whatever race, etc…). It also seems that women that are too old to have children of their own don’t really worry about any risks to that ability for other women that can. Not 100%, but there is that aspect as a potential.

      “Free reign” is exactly the right term. It’s sometimes seen as something different than an attack in that environment, I guess because of an association with doctors, nurses, and medicine. The definition is different than the situation.

      You know what’s odd? All these same things, if it happens in another country, is seen as a problem. If someone were to go to Mexico, for instance & all these same things were aimed at them, they’d see it as an issue. They’d also see it as an issue if these were the things that were done in that country (like the different things about Muslim countries that people talk about). Now it’s oppressive & it’s an attack regardless of the designation & they’d start wondering how other things go in that country (“If this is what flies in that situation, what happens in any other one?”).

  91. Karen says:

    straightforward female genital mutilation advocated by doctors in the usa until the 1960s:

    “Female circumcision in the USA

    Clitoridectomy and other circumcision-like operation on girls and women had a longer career in United States, where doctors deplored Baker Brown’s disgrace and The Medical Record defended him with the question “What now will be the chance for recovery for the poor epileptic female with a clitoris?” [11] There was also a vigorous attempt to apply the theories of Lewis Sayre – that many nervous diseases were caused by a tight or non-retractable foreskin – to women, and a number of doctors urged that girls also should have their clitoral hoods excised if there was any suspicion of adhesions of the accumulation of “secretions”. In 1892 another defender of Brown (he was “almost on the right track”), Dr Robert Morris, went so far as to suggest that, since 80 per cent of American women suffered from preputial adhesions, all schoolgirls should be inspected to ensure that proper separation between prepuce and clitoris had occurred. He was apparently confident that most of the girls would require surgery, and added: “The separation of adhesive prepuces in young unmarried women should be done by female physicians anyway, and such physicians can be abundantly occupied with this sort of work”. [12] It was a valiant effort to expand the market for medical services, and he must have been disappointed that his suggestions were not more widely taken up.

    Even so, articles on the virtues of female circumcision continued to appear sporadically in American medical journals until the 1960s, and there are regular reports of girls or women being subjected to various procedures, particularly the shortening of their labia or clitoris when parents or a husband judged them “too long”. As with circumcision of boys, the medical case for female circumcision has always contained a strong element of cultural or aesthetic preference.”

    http://www.historyofcircumcision.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=category&sectionid=13&id=76&Itemid=6

  92. Karen says:

    “Nearly all obstetrician-gynecologists would conduct bimanual pelvic examinations in routine visits with asymptomatic women across the lifespan for the vignettes presented (Figure 1). Nearly all respondents indicated that they would perform the examination in the 55-year-old despite the absence of her ovaries, uterus, and cervix, and over half believed it to be very important for this woman. ”
    http://www.ajog.org/article/S0002-9378(12)02070-4/fulltext

    I purposefully have posted this in the sexual abuse thread. What else would this be?

  93. Karen says:

    From the same source: ACOG recommends annual pelvic examinations in all women aged ≥21 years, stating that “no evidence supports or refutes” performance of the examination in asymptomatic, low-risk women; the reasoning behind performance of the examination is not defined.3

    What a joke.

    • Alex says:

      “Reasoning undefined” sounds an awful lot like “no comment” at a press conference. I guess they don’t define their reasons (not that they matter) because the reasons are malignant. Ulterior motives aren’t very marketable & I don’t think too many women would see it as medically valuable. Also, have you ever noticed how things are always at whatever age is more or less considered to be adulthood? A lot of things aren’t safe for someone UNDER 18 (and 21 has somewhat replaced 18 as the “adulthood line”). I guess because someone could be charged with harming a child/minor, which is seen as worse than harming an adult. Maybe there’s also the angle of defense that “they’re adults, they make their own decisions”- even when the doctor is imposing their own. I guess coercion & deception is impossible when someone reaches the age of adulthood?

      Interesting side-note: The age of consent is somehow pertinent but consent, itself, is not.

      The also can’t say “I know it’s a problem, but I like problems.” Not without revealing themselves to be an enemy. So what happens? The situation gets made out to not be a problem & maybe someone else is being cruel for acting like they are the “bad guy.” Which would pretty much require reality to take a coffee break to be true- again, not something that’s going to be openly stated.

      It’s a pretty sneaky tactic & I guess you’d call that “implicit reasoning.” That “this” or “that” would have to be the case for something to be true (and like I’ve said before: there tends to be a bit of a knee-jerk presumption of honesty & accuracy that gets used on people). It always amazes me how sneaky these people are & yet other people act like it’s not a deliberate thing. Yeah, everything’s an accident so there’s nothing to feel bothered by on that level (no sense of someone being “after you”).

    • ADM (Canada) says:

      If there is no evidence to support performing pelvic exams then why are they still performing them. A medical test, especially such an intimate one, shouldn’t be performed if there isn’t clear scientific evidence supporting its validity. It’s also interesting in your above link to the research study that some of the Dr’s responded that they perform pelvic exams for reassurance of the women. The reason that any woman would request a pelvic exam and need that reassurance is because Dr’s have stated for years that it is an important screening exam that is fundamental in women’s health care. Now am I to conclude based on those Dr’s responses that they aren’t performing pelvic exams because it is an important medical exam but they don’t really know why they’re performing them beyond it being rote and to reassure women. Further evidence against the presumption that the medical system is based on and practices from sound scientific research and methods.

  94. Karen says:

    Exactly, it is so arbitrary in this context, 18 and 21. No-one who is not a dimwit can believe girls at 18 will suddenly get cancer unless a good doctor jams their fingers up their vaginas. It is not only about the “rights”, ie consenting to the abuse of the scumbags, but about the “duties” of adult, they must maintain good adult bodies, ie object them to surveillance and the weird grooming.

    • Alex says:

      Yeah, “duties” doesn’t imply a decision. It’s like an approval rating & the girl/woman will get smacked in the face emotionally if she doesn’t do as directed. Oddly enough- if she doesn’t leave an overbearing husband or one that hits her, she’s being stupid.

      Like I said in a different post, that’s called “mental vitiation.” It’s really shocking that women do it to other women (and on the doctor’s behalf, no less). They get pissed if they’re not given equal pay or if someone says they can’t do something a man can do, but someone can make their own decisions with her body (or her kids’, relatives’, friends’, etc…). I really don’t mean to act like these are good things, but they’re considerably less severe.

  95. Moo says:

    The bimanual exam apparently is supposed to determine if the uterus is retroverted or whatever. This information really is not that important. The position of the uterus can change in pregnancy and even from some yoga exercises. So why would a woman need that every year?

    Sticking fingers up vagina and a us are supposed to detect restocele or whatever is bulging, however if that is bad enough to need surgery or treatment a woman would complaining about it. Just ask a woman if she has trouble with constipation or sees blood in feces or dark stools instead of jamming fingers up those orfices.

    Why do the genitals need to be inspected under a bright light? Ask a woman if she has warts or anything bothers her. If it is bad enough she would come in to see about it.

    As much as I find Pap tests useless, self paps just make more sense to me. Some women do want them they should have them. But I think that a male doctor should consider that HE might be the problem and a female to do Pap tests or take swabs for bacteria should be offered as an option. Just a greedy doctor wants to be his quota for incentive payment, nothing about a woman’s health.

    • Alex says:

      Yeah, I guess the doctor’s not convinced that someone isn’t lying to them. They figure they’ll investigate as they please & determine whether or not the dynamics are a problem (and, of course, something of that nature being imposed is only an issue in a stairwell or a crackhouse).

      Speaking of which: When one of my cousins was little, she fell & cut her face at the store. She goes to the hosptial to get stitches & they make her take all her clothes off! Supposedly they were wondering if she had brusies from getting hit at home. I wonder what kind of tests they do if they suspect my uncle was “playing doctor” on her? This also happened with one of the boys (my mother’s cousins, so I guess second cousins?).

    • Alex says:

      Just saw a book called “For Her Own Good: Two Centuries of the Experts Advice to Women.” Might be very interesting & it certainly seems to mention a lot medical things (along with the other things going on in the background that swayed these situations).

      It’s by Barbara Ehrenreich & Deirdre English and it really does look good.

  96. Moo says:

    There seems to be the trend towards useless testing and record keeping, useless to the patient anyway. So ask about constipation and that justifies “consent” to a rectal exam that the patient is not really asked about, told why the test is being done or given any advice to remedy the condition. Would this take up too much time? It enables the abuse to take place and also “justify” the exam in the medical records. It is not the health care is want.

    Naturopaths will interview a patient for 60 to 90 minutes intially but assess all the problems a person might have. Then after the most urgent issues are addressed then they usually have about 3-4 45-30 minutes per year to prevent health issues. Medical doctors will set up opportunities to abuse later and they only spent 15-20 minutes doing a physical, no counselling, just record keeping. They do not seem to have time, just only “come back in two weeks” so I can abuse and bill you later.

    I suppose naturopaths could abuse patients as much sexually as any medical doctor. Just seems that more of them go into that profession to heal rather than to make money or abuse. Some chiropractors seems abusive and greedy to me though. I wonder if there is less abuse by doctors in countries where medical education is free or greatly subsidized?

  97. Karen says:

    Alex- the “For Her Own Good” book is really good. It specifically mentions pelvic exams in the context of “the crisis of the feminin” so that they are about assessing the patients reaction to penetration, because healthy women able to function in a nuclear family need vaginal orgasms and need to enjoy penetration. Finally one discourse in which the pelvic exam makes sense!

    • Moo says:

      What? Sex is not all about penis-in-vagina stuff. Lesbians have been complaining about this in regards to healthcare prejudge forever. There are asexual women who just want healthcare for their reproductive parts and have no intention of using those organs for procreation or even recreation. Yet they are treated the same. There is too much of assuming that heterosexual sex is normal and homosexuality or a sexuality is a disease. It is not!

      What I am protesting is the bimanual exam is rather useless, not informed and results not reported to the patient. So it is misused and done as a matter of routine rather than helpful as a diagnostic. How many doctors have told you why they are doing a bimanual exam and I your uterus position.

      Having a retroverted or otherwise mail positioned uterus does cause menstrual pain, endometriosis and other problems yet these issues are rarely related. Certain yoga positions, Mayan pelvic massage, belly dancing, better posture can help reposition the uterus.

      Uterine prolapse is a great problem to older women and restocele and other conditions a concern to many. Yet how many women have preventative measures discussed with them at doctor’s consults other than “do Kegel’s” . I think that too many surgeries are beng done on women just to make money. Not enough prevention is done in healthcare and I do not consider cancer screening as prevention at all.

      Pelvic exams are mostly an opportunity for doctors to abuse not to educate about health or even sometimes diagnose unless some expensive therapy could be prescribed.

      No faith in healthcare. I do not trust my doctor either. I have trusted very few doctors.

    • ADM (Canada) says:

      Moo, it isn’t just most gynecological surgeries that are often unnecessary. It is estimated that every year that millions of surgeries performed are unnecessary. The reasons are Dr incompetence or lack of training in less invasive alternatives, their personal bias of surgery is the only option, personal profit, and in some cases it is malpractice criminal behavior. I don’t mistrust Dr’s but I am certainly aware of their bias and that their knowledge is often limited especially when it comes to newer research findings and alternative/integrative health.

    • Alex says:

      Well, the conditions of that penetration doesn’t cease to exist. That is a HUGE factor & the idea that the husband & wife will have a good sex life after prior trauma is somewhat doubtful. Never mind any role-playing scenarios.

      I was going to say that doctors think by adjucation & try to “edit context” because they’re of the mind that reality is what they say it is (that it’s this personality trait presenting itself in their behavior). I was also going to say they figure they can edit their mistakes out of the situation & now they’re not wrong and that applies to wronging someone as well- because what happened didn’t occur.

      I don’t think either of these things is really true, though. They definitely see when the situation isn’t going their way. They deliberately formulate tactics to generate this effect in counteraction of someone else. They deliberately figure out ways to lie & otherwise manipulate people to cover their tracks. It’s not accidentally presenting things as a fixed situation, using false claims, attempting to induce fear or guilt, or simply doing things to someone in their sleep. Mental vitiation is more subtle than physcially fighting someone, but it’s still an outside orchestration of whatever situation (and there can be a variety of them).

      So I figure outright malice is the baseline reason. Altruism doesn’t produce ownership, but pretending to be charitably inclined might make someone feel guilty about treating the assailant like an enemy.

      One other thing: look at the background for all these different things in history- torture, slavery, general arrogance, self-serving deceptions, unrelated deductions that may or may not have been false to begin with. Not really a lot of reason to presume that there will be a lot to gain from them, anyway. I guess sometimes the prospect of a missed opportunity for something that may have been useful can really get to people, but it can also chain someone to a bad situation. Someone keeps thinking that there will be something there for them at some point or that someone will one day tell the truth, but it doesn’t happen. It’s like a compulsive gambler, but with different subjects.

  98. ColeyX says:

    Hey ladies,

    Thought I would give you an update on my situation. After I sent my complaint, I got an email the next day just letting me know that the hospital had received it. Then at the beginning of the following week, I got a letter from the hospital’s chief executive, basically reassuring me that they were taking the case extremely seriously and that they would do a full investigation. He said that they would be taking a full statement from the doctor and they would contact me as soon as possible.

    On Monday the complaints manager at the hospital sent me an email saying that they had spoken to the doctor and taken a formal statement. She said that they would like me to attend a formal meeting where I’ll be able to expand on my points and have to answer questions regarding my statement. She said I’ll be shown a copy of the doctor’s statement so that I can comment on it.

    Initially they wanted to do this meeting tomorrow but I’m shooting all day tomorrow, so I asked them to have it next Monday. Earlier today I spoke on the phone to the complaints manager just to make sure that the doctor wouldn’t be attending the same meeting. She said he wouldn’t, which is what I presumed anyway, but I wanted to check, because I was concerned I’d lose control of my emotions if he was there. I’d probably slap him lol. The complaints manager sounded like a very nice woman and she said she was going to be at the meeting. I asked if they’d got a copy of the medical report the doctor made for my physical and she said they had.

    The significant development so far is that the doctor put on the report that he DID perform a breast exam on me. I’m guessing that he wrote in his statement that he just offered the exam and I accepted it or that I actually asked him to do one. Just the thought of him blatantly lying like that makes me angry! Anyway, I’m going to attend this meeting on Monday and just tell them exactly what happened and answer whatever questions they have.

    I really should be going to sleep now lol

    Hope you all had a great Christmas and lovely New Year! xx

    • Alex says:

      That’s great, ColeyX! Hope it goes well.

      I figure your story speaks for itself, but keep in mind that they might try to retroactively alter the story (“Well, is it possible that you asked for him to perform this exam?” or something similar). Things that throw you for a loop mentally are bread & butter tactic with that kind of “person.” It’s confusing BECAUSE it doesn’t make sense- that’s the point (I guess the overall idea would be called “mental vitiation”- like a mental version of what a fight is physically).

      Anyway, thanks for the holiday wishes. Merry Christmas & happy New Year to you, too.

  99. Mary says:

    Great news ColeyX. I wonder if he added the breast exam to the report after he heard about the complaint. I have had doctors “doctor” my records in the past.

  100. Moo says:

    I doubt much will come of the investigation because no one died, they are not being sued, the police are not involved etc. that doctor might be wiser or just continue abusing. The abuse survivor, I am sorry to you but now we all know more about exams, that we have the right to with hold consent at any point in treatment or examinations.

    • Regardless of the outcome of the investigation itself, I am sure the process will make the doctor extremely uncomfortable and less likely to abuse in the future. Not many women lodge formal complaints and as Elizabeth has said, doctors know that. So whenever a woman takes the necessary steps to file a formal complaint, it decreases the risk of abuse and helps to protect future patients.

  101. Chrissy (UK) says:

    Coley X, I would be interested in his medical justification for performing a breast exam on an asymptomatic young woman. I would also be interested in his reasons for checking your heart and lungs without your bra on. He is skating on very thin ice. Well done for filing a complaint as it certainly re-addresses the power balance – I hope at the very least it gives him one hell of a fright.

    • Alex says:

      Not to criticize, but even if there WAS some potential utility in doing that it doesn’t “justify” them applying this action of their own accord. If someone was at work & the boss coerced them into being topless & letting them grab her chest is sexual harrassment (or coercive attack, either term works). They frequently seem to think that their “attaching riders” to something makes it medically important.

      I really do think that the doctor feels that the patient does not determine what does & does not happen to them. They feel that they, themselves, are independant & do as they choose- the patient comporting the situation in a different manner is now “bullying” them. I’ve found there’s no way to argue with someone like that, they can only be counteracted.

    • Alex says:

      Jsut thought of something: You know when doctors or different publications say things like “women AVOID getting ____”? Well, I remember someone saying that it sounds like they’re doing something wrong by doing so & it does seem to be the intention.

      I was thinking if maybe it was phrased (by other people, of course) that they are “ESCAPING” something (whatever things happen to be referenced, because there’s a few) that would depict things a bit more accurately. I figure the problematic nature of the situation would ring true for a lot of women. I guess it doesn’t get outright stated as an issue, since there’s various views that it’s immature to think compositionally or to have bodily autonomy or self-protectiveness.

    • Moo says:

      Stethoscopes work perfectly well over light clothing. There is no reason to ask for a bra to be removed either. I had previously put up some reference to a study on that matter. This doctor might want to invest in a better stethoscope and learn to use it properly. Saying that the breast exam was compulsory is the huge issue here.

      I hope he fries.

  102. Mary says:

    Exactly Chrissy. Do male models get testicular exams when they go on modelling assignments?
    I searched all over the web the other day trying to find UK guidelines for breast exams for asymptomatic women and I could not find any mention of them. This obviously means that are not meant to be done at all so I can’t wait to hear how he is going to justify this.

  103. Chrissy (UK) says:

    Alex,
    I agree that even if the breast exam was medically indicated, he should still not have imposed it as mandatory. My point was that if he is unable to clinically justify the exam, then the board looking at the complaint are more likely see it as an abuse of his position and a serious breach of trust.

  104. ColeyX says:

    Hi everyone,

    I went to that meeting this afternoon that I was talking about. All in all, there was pretty encouraging news.

    The hospital review panel said that they would finish their investigation and let me know on Thursday whether they thought this case was serious enough to refer to an independent panel – put together by NHS England. They said that after their investigation so far and everything I said today, that they were LIKELY to take this next step and refer the incident.

    They said that I was right to have made a complaint and that my concerns were legitimate. Apparently this independent panel will determine the extent of any wrongdoing and whether any disciplinary action should be taken. But it’s not guaranteed to get that far yet. I’ll have to wait till Thursday.

    About the actual meeting, the whole thing was relatively pleasant. There were three other people, the hospital CEO, the complaints manager and a legal representative. The general vibe from all of them was quite positive and understanding – the complaints manager (a woman) complimented my boots lol.

    They gave me a copy of the doctor’s version of events to read through. There were two main points here.

    Firstly, he said that he initially listened to my heart with me having my bra on, heard some noises that could have indicated turbulent blood flow, THEN asked me to take it off to check more thoroughly in case of a murmur. He lied. I explained what actually happened, that he told me to take my bra off BEFORE listening at all. They actually seemed more concerned about this than the breast exam. I distinctly remember the CEO saying that it would be extremely unnecessary to listen for heart noises so carefully at a routine physical since I had no relevant history, and that usually you can do so without removal of the bra anyway.

    Then we spoke about the circumstances leading to the breast exam. The doctor wrote that he offered to perform a breast exam in order to be thorough and that I accepted the offer. Another blatant lie. I told them how I initially refused the exam but that he said it was ‘compulsory’ for the physical and that he ‘needed to do it’ to finish the medical report. The legal rep (also a woman) asked, if I felt that uncomfortable, why I didn’t just leave? I told them that in hindsight that’s exactly what I should have done but, at the time, I knew I needed to pass the physical to go on the trip for my shoot, and that I felt too intimidated to really do anything. They all said that if this was true then it would be a serious breach of trust and that even if what he said was true, it was still inappropriate to even offer the exam – since the NHS doesn’t recommend clinical breast exams for young women.

    So that’s basically what happened today. I hope you’re all enjoying the New Year. xx

    • Alice (Australia) says:

      Coley, thank you for the update.
      I am very glad that the panel was treating you with respect; and that even if that sleazy doctor manages to wiggle out and convince the investigators that he wasn’t lying and you consented to the exam, he will be in trouble anyway — this exam should not be offered to young women, full stop.

      Great effort Coley! Thanks to people like you we have a some chance of getting rid or reduce medical misconduct. :-)

  105. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    ColeyX
    Thanks for keeping us posted, I’m so pleased it went well.
    I think this doctor is in big trouble – also, you now know you were assaulted in the exam room, your instincts were 100% correct – you know he’s “doctored” his statement. He can’t tell the truth, it would incriminate him, but his version of the events is hardly believable, if you’d agreed to an elective breast exam, you wouldn’t be complaining now. (doctors need to understand even making the offer is unacceptable. Doctors don’t offer men a quick routine check of the testicles, do they?) He can’t get away from the fact that routine breast exams are not recommended, and saying the exam was “compulsory” amounts to coercion. Personally, I feel the matter should be referred to the Police and not just a disciplinary board, this man assaulted you and that’s more than misconduct, it’s a criminal offence. I’ve never understood why abuse by doctors can be dealt with by the profession and treated as something less than assault.
    Anyway, this man did not get away with it, he’ll have to be very careful in the future. I wonder whether there have been other complaints about this man. Your actions have probably spared other young women from the same abuse.

    • Alex says:

      Another interesting point: If someone, patient or not, comes into the doctor’s office & starts touching them, much less self-electively probing them, that WOULD be handled by the police. If they reported it, that is.

      I’d be very cautious of the police, though. A lot of the stuff they do runs a very close parallel with the types of things doctors pull- sometimes they’re getting doctors to do it for them, in fact. They might not like the idea of someone going against that sort of thing. They also seem to be the ones advising women not to fight back if someone tries to rape them, as well. Just keep in mind that it might be a bit of a coin-flip with them.

      I know I’ve mentioned this type of thing before, but if you read about what happened to that diplomat from India you might get a bit more of an impression of what you’re dealing with. This woman was a DIPLOMAT & still they decided to strip search her (and, apparently, probe her repeatedly). If that’s how they’ll act in spite of the fact that the law seems to forbid it, how are they going to be when the law DOESN’T forbid it?

      This was considered “standard arrestee intake procedures” & getting arrested doesn’t depend on having done something- an arrest is part of “sorting things out,” yet this would be worse than what it proportionate to most crimes if they DID occur.

  106. Moo says:

    Why didn’t you leave? another blame the victim excuse.

  107. I wanted to share a link to statement of a former patient of Dr. LaFuria, a male gynecologist who abused numerous women at http://www.kplctv.com/story/24400629/statement-from-former-lafuria-patient-released.

    • Alex says:

      I can’t believe he only gets 8 years for that. I bet if he kidnapped the judge & didn’t do anything else, strange or not, it’d be a lot worse.

      For whatever “abusing a juvenile” means in this case, he should get death. I’m usually the type to distrust varius charges from law enforcement (a major part of that is because they do these sorts of things, themselves- officially & unofficially), but given all the surrounding circumstances I’d say pulling the trigger is pretty sinless.

  108. ColeyX says:

    Hey everyone,

    I was told today that the hospital review panel WERE going to refer my incident to the independent NHS panel.

    The hospital’s complaints manger called me to tell me this earlier today. She said that their review decided that, at best, this doctor had behaved inappropriately and unprofessionally.

    I asked her what happens next and she said that the NHS panel will decide whether or not to impose a sanction – usually an official warning or a period of supervision. They could also decide to take this to a GMC (General Medical Council) disciplinary hearing or even refer it to the police. The independent panel are going to meet on January 28th and she said I should hear what they decided on the 29th.

    She was quite honest and said that it was unlikely the independent panel would get the police involved, given that there is little evidence regarding the opposing statements – at one point she actually used the phrase, ‘Your word against his’. I forgot to mention this last time, but they told me on Monday that there haven’t been any serious complaints made against this doctor before. She was really nice about the whole thing though.

    I’m actually quite happy about how this is turning out. My aim was just to get an official complaint on record against him – firstly to discourage him from doing something like this again, and secondly, to scare him lol. Now it looks like he might actually get some sort of punishment – even if it’s just a minor one, it’s still something and he’ll be terrified of the consequences if he does anything like this again. I’m hoping this whole thing is making him lose some sleep lol.

    Thanks again everyone for your words of support. xx

    • Alice says:

      That’s still good news Coley.
      The doctor will get a complaint record, and if he ever does anything of the sort again and the victim acts like you did – he will not get away with it next time, for sure!

      I wish more women behaved like you did. That would mean the doctors would not only think twice before doing anything nasty, but it would also make it much easier for the next victim, it it comes to it at all.

      I hope it also helped you feel better: you took actions, and you won. You punished the wrongdoer, and that made you a winner who will keep the victory in her memory, rather than a victim who would have to live with bitter memories of being violated (most women end up being the latter, unfortunately).

      My sincere congratulations! ;-)

  109. I was very disturbed about what happened to this lady who went to ER for stomach pains at http://www.mysexualabuse.com/threads/uncomfortable-pap-smear-exam.664/. It is so ridiculous that a male doctor in ER told this lady she needed a pap smear when she came in for stomach pains. Pap smear is a test for cervical cancer and not for stomach problems. I wish that this male doctor had been charged with sexual abuse. It is easy for patients to be taken advantage of in ER. There are also some other comments that you all may be interested in reading.

    Misty

    • Alex says:

      Yeah, the E.R. can be a very dangerous place. They decide to comport a situation according to their discretion (which can mean anything) & then act like they are being attacked if someone tries to alter the course of that situation. If someone is wounded it puts them even more at a disadvantage, just like if they trust these employees & find out suddenly that they are now a threat.

      “We don’t have time, we have to save lives” type of arguments abound. They “don’t have time” for what, exactly? To NOT molest the patient? Or to NOT waste other people’s crucial time with things that would be superfluous even if it had been consensual?

  110. Moo says:

    Some people tend to confuse or misuse the term Pap test for pelvic exam. A pelvic exam might be indicated for a women with abdominal pain because the cause could be etopic pregnancy, PID, miscarriage but many other questions would be asked as well. It could be appendix but even just a bad case of gas.

    A Pap test itself would be ridiculous and just opportunistic. It a tumour in the uterus, vagina or cervix was large enough to cause pain it would be felt or seen during a pelvic exam either feeling or seen with a speculum exam. Then an ultrasound would ordered. Pap test which is cytology (looking at cells under a microscope) would not be too help in a critical situation.

  111. I wanted to let you all know that Dr. LaFuria, the male gynecologist who took pictures of women’s genitals was sentenced to 8 years in prison according to http://www.wwl.com/Louisiana-Doctor-sentenced-for-photographing-patie/18145731.

    Misty

    • Moo says:

      Sickening enough. This doctor got caught taking photos and videos of his unsuspecting patients.

      There are probably thousands of doctors and medical staff or others doing this and not getting caught. The penalties are high enough – not being able to practice medicine (or do they just move to another jurisdiction).

      How many doctor’s office, mammogram and ultrasound clinics, change rooms and washrooms have secret cameras in them?

      Colposcopies are video recorded. I find this disturbing.

  112. Si says:

    Another gynaecologist sex offender grooms his vulnerable patient into an unhealthy relationship. Once again he was a known sex offender inside the walls of the medical patriarchy yet still allowed to practice. Unfortunately Jezebel blames the perils of cyber space and not the institution that has worked to create these creeps in the first place.
    http://jezebel.com/the-terrible-tale-of-the-sexting-gyno-1501445820

  113. I encourage you all to look at my comments about sexual abuse in medical settings at http://bioethicsdiscussion.blogspot.com/2014/01/patient-modesty-volume-62.html#c5689772697975267576. Look at how Dr. Bernstein responded. I encourage you all to consider posting comments to support me.

    Misty

    • ADM (Canada) says:

      I read over on Dr Bernstein’s blog and I think his intentions are good and I like that he is teaching his students about modesty. Unfortunately at other times I don’t think he gets that violations of modesty and of bodily autonomy in the medical world are not uncommon. It begins with informed consent. Recently I was at the Dr and again I was presented with the word “have to” and it was only after I refused that I was informed that I could. Ethically any medical test or procedure has to be presented with the option of refusal. To not present the option of refusal and to go ahead is a violation of bodily autonomy and could have psychological implications for the patient. Modesty and sexual assault are also not two separate issues. Sexual assault or assault is not always exhibited with overt behavior but is about power and control over someone. That power and control can be not providing informed consent, exposure when it’s not required, exposure beyond what is required, or not providing adequate coverage or proper draping. A medical professional who has the mind set of being in control is not going to be concerned with a patients modesty.

      • Alex says:

        It’s a self-defense concern, not a modesty issue. I can emphasize enough how it comes off like it’s other than an attack. It’s never called a “modesty concern” if someone fights off an attacker in the bathroom & that’s the correct category for this kind of thing.

        Take a different situation, for instance: If there were a bunch of patients getting poisoned by doctors & nurses, the article would probably be titled “Patient Safety” or “Dangers of a Hospital Stay,” right?

        An article titled “No Means No, Doctor!” would be a good one. I would vey much like to see a flood of articles that flat-out say things that are argued against all the time: Properties DON’T change by designation, that medical risks ARE still risks, that medical personnel imposing things of this nature is an IATROGENIC ATTACK.

    • ADM (Canada) says:

      I have to ask that my comments here not be posted on other forums without my permission. It was never my intention that my post here be posted on Dr Bernsteins blog.

    • S.D. says:

      Hi Misty,
      I used to go to Dr. Bernstein’s blog and I commented there a few times. I came to regret both actions.

      In my opinion, whatever good intentions he may espouse, he JUST DOESN’T GET IT. He is much more an apologist for his colleagues than an advocate for his patients. How else does one account for his frequent assertion that systematically oppressed patients need to “speak up”?

      I appreciate your excellent efforts at being an assertive advocate on his blog. You have raised excellent points, and I admire your courage in doing so. I also really like your blog. I wonder if you would consider having a “comments” or “discussion” section on Medical Patient Modesty? It would be good to have somewhere in addition to the Bioethics blog to go to discuss these issues.

  114. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    I don’t post on Dr Bernstein’s forum either, I do recommend Dr Joel Sherman’s blog though, he does listen and he’s taken some brave action on our behalf. (“Informed consent is missing from pap testing” which was published on Kevin MD and the WSJ) He also, tackled the female doctor who closed a thread on her blog when women started questioning the need for pap tests. (can’t stand her, she’s deleted a few of my posts too)
    I haven’t posted over there in a while…but I shouldn’t forget his site and BlogCritics were the first forums that didn’t delete or make changes to my posts. We all know what happened at BlogCritics, I suspected they would come under pressure to get rid of the thread and silence so many informed posters. I simply don’t believe it’s taken this long to reload the comments. Too many powerful people would have wanted that thread gone.
    I doubt that will happen at Dr Sherman’s site.

    • Alex says:

      That thing with Blogcritics was both suprising & not suprising. There was so much in the way of information that someone might just benefit from it! I hope more people start putting up sites that include these subjects. I’d think pregnancy sites & really anything that mentions different medical things would have them. I’d strongly suggest for this to come up in conversation enough for it to be commonplace & remembered (not ALL the time, but frequently).

      It doesn’t even have to be strictly dedicated to this topic- it could just be “peppered” with different things. I do this all the time in conversation, actually. Saying “it’s your body, your rules” is pretty multi-use & it comes up at a few different angles. Same with “properties don’t change because of designation/a situation is what it consist of.” Can apply to pretty much anything.

      If someone just so happens to mention that “a lot of things that are “suggested” to women don’t work as advertised” while talking about various conditions that someone might think they have. That these tests have low utility & high risk just rolls right off that starting point. One can very simply say that “even if something is a means to an end the dynamics of that method might be an issue in itself.” “It’s not immature or defective to have bodily autonomy & self-protectiveness or to think compositionally,” runs right off of that.

    • Alice says:

      Luckily, the lost comments from BlogCritics have been saved and re-posted in the new Unnecessary Pap Smears blog by the hostess of this web site!

      Big thanks to Sue for dedicating hours of her time to help other women to find the vital information!

      Google will index the new location and the other women will be able to find the comments.

  115. I wanted to let you all know about this sad story: Cop ruptures 16-year-old’s testicles during frisk at http://thelibertarianrepublic.com/cop-ruptures/#axzz2rX0YPojQ . A female police officer ruptured this teenage boy’s testicles. This boy had to undergo surgery. This should have never happened. It is not just the medical profession that you have to worry about.

    Misty

  116. Karen says:

    From 2012, a point in time when pretty much every major news outlet has published the growing research that pelvic exams are not evidence based, and never have been. What excuse does Jezebel have to blatantly perpetuate what essentially is medical rape, by giving the victims patronising survival tips? “The key to a good pelvic exam is communication. “…? Oh excuse me, just shut up!

    http://jezebel.com/5878551/how-to-prepare-for-a-pelvic-exam-if-youre-a-sexual-assault-survivor

  117. Karen says:

    A quote from among the comments: “You can request pediatric instruments, to have a friend present, or valium.” It beggars belief. Benzos are super addictive, and going cold turkey can actually kill. Messing with something powerful like valium to go through this disgusting, dangerous, humiliating exam based on no whatsoever scientific evidence, and not done in most of the western world….

    • Karen says:

      An other comment: LdfzjtletatxUbeth441L
      I have a friend who had skin cancer on the inside of her labia minora, which was identified during a pap smear / pelvic exam. 1/23/12 7:20pm
      How many men worry about skin cancer under their testicles…? I would like to know what drives this utter irrationality when it comes to women who allow these revolting exams.

      • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

        Yes, the focus is firmly on our reproductive organs and breasts, while heart disease remains the top killer of men and women. (lung cancer is the No. 1 cancer)
        Women are conditioned to fear their own bodies, view them with suspicion so they readily hand control over to the medical profession. I think medicalizing the asymptomatic female body occurred when the medical profession was made up almost entirely of men, so menstruation, childbirth etc. were all viewed as medical issues (rather than natural and normal) and things to be controlled by doctors for our “own good”.

        Also, the skin cancer found during a pelvic exam, did this really help the woman? It might not have changed a thing, the same outcome achieved if she’d eventually found it herself. Also, some cancers never progress and are not worth finding – many thyroid, kidney, breast and prostate cancers fall into that category. Almost all “abnormal” cells removed form the cervix would not progress to invasive cancer. No other part of the body is subjected to such close and regular scrutiny right through life with every “abnormal” result monitored and most women eventually biopsied and many end up “treated”. This insane focus on the cervix means an in-tact cervix is now an endangered body part.
        Also, I don’t do anything that exposes me to risk to screen for a rare event and skin cancer on your labia would be a rare event.
        I’ll stick with the sensible approach, cover the basics and focus on the real threats to my life. I also, enjoy life and don’t want to waste time (and nervous energy) having unnecessary exams/tests/biopsies/treatments. Life is far too short. I cannot imagine how horrible it must be to have a medical life, regularly climbing into stirrups, having biopsies and “treatments” etc.

      • Alex says:

        There’s actually a book called “For Her Own Good.” Don’t know if you guys know about it, but it covers a lot of history.

        It really is shocking that people that do these kinds of things are considered trustable. The focus on how doctors treat women is a bit of an indicator of how things might go, in general. “Iatrogenic harm” is not a commonly known term (at least in America- I know I’ve always had to explain what that meant), but it does kind of slip a general theme into joint.

        Women, I think, are more self-critical than men & that gets used against you in a couple of ways. The simple theme of “your body is trash” is one & Elizabeth just referenced it. Another one is that she’s immature, stupid, or otherwise defective for self-protectiveness & thinking compositionally. Same goes for not outsourcing her decisions to others.

        Another one is guilt- that’s a button that gets hit quite a bit, particularly in medical settings. Ever hear of the concept of “purchasing?” What it means, in this case, is getting someone to feel increasingly guilty & figure they deserve scorn/detriment/etc… . This isn’t to say that nobody should ever feel guilty about anything or that nobody ever has it coming, but it’s possible to just act like that’s the case without a groundwork of honesty being there.

        Speaking of purchases, there’s also the sense of actual consumer satisfaction. Someone feels like they made a good purchase & didn’t get scammed. Of course, in this case, it’s a bit more than a scam- considering dynamics.

  118. Karen says:

    Doctors giving healthy women dangerous and addictive DRUGS (valium is rather sought after in the black market) so women allow them to penetrate their vagina… excuse, me are they not afraid of litigation? They seem to fear it so much when someone wants the pill without a pap smear.

    • Alex says:

      So they give someone something that is very addictive, in combination with probing them? Sounds an awful lot like the pattern of getting someone hooked on heroin & “playing doctor” as the fee when they try to get some more. Might not be too easy to get their hands on an arbitrary prescription.

      When they mention legal problems if they give someone the pill without probing them, here’s a good response: “No, you won’t get into any trouble for that. You WILL have trouble for coercive iatrogenic assault & reproductive endangerment, though.”

      For a coup de grace, you could add: “Properties don’t change because of designation- just like if a doctor poisons someone with a needle, it’s still murder.” I think that would sound like a courtroom argument that they wouldn’t have any room to bullshit people (and thus, couldn’t win)- they can’t very well say “A situation is NOT what it consists of & what happens ISN’T what occurs.”

      • Karen says:

        “reproductive endangerment” hahaha, thanks for this concept!

      • Alex says:

        You’re welcome & it’s my pleasure! It’s one of the major reasons I post on this site.

        I very much love to put holes in their bullshit & chop down their efforts at “assaultive interfaces.” That’s a good term for anything that goes against you, really. I notice a lot of people seem to not know what to say when this sort of thing comes up & usually the term “humiliating” is what’s used. That doesn’t seem to quite cover it, though (especially becaue it sounds, at least to me, like someone sees themselves as lower because of other people’s actions).

        I hope this doesn’t come off as condescending, but if you want a few more:
        (1) Something being “antagonistic to your alignment” is when something is against the grain. Hard to phrase the problem of it clashing with you, but not being pain-related.
        (2) Someone being “sexually confrontational” is a good way to describe someone being an antagonist on that level.
        (3) The “constituents” are what something consists of, just like ingredients (don’t know why it’s not called “constitutents”).

        A lot of this is just simply putting words to the situation by describing it, but a lot of these aren’t really common terms- so it doesn’t pop into someone’s head to use them.

  119. Jamie says:

    This is why I’ll never go back to the obgyn. I’d rather die before being bullied, harassed, & lied to.

  120. Jamie says:

    The number 1 killer in women is heart disease, yet doctors don’t scream for women to go to the cardiologist every year. Cervical cancer is rare. Why all the hysteria over a rare cancer? I’ll tell you why, MONEY! I’d rather die then subject myself to that bullshit test.

    • Alex says:

      Keep in mind that heart disease is facilitated by hysterectomies, so there’s yet another situation of biological undermining right there. “Oh, this isn’t a problem- but lets cut things out of you, anyway. This, in itself, causes other problems? Oh. Well, is your insurance going to be paying for all this, or… .”

      Outright malice can be another reason, as well as general pervyness. Don’t forget assorted issues with women. Or with life, in general. That, of course, would aim quite a bit at women- particularly toward certain areas.

      It’s very respectable that you’d sooner die than lose your life in the form of other people hi-jacking it. Things along these lines tend to stick with people, it doesn’t matter what the variation is.

  121. Karen says:

    http://www.babycenter.com/400_my-best-friend-is-33-and-never-had-a-pap-smear-and-refuses-w_13072678_95.bc

    Again utter idiots commenting:
    “How did she ever avoid it all this time anyway? She must have a very detached and unattentive family doc! If my family doctor noticed I had never had a paptest or pelvic exam, I can assure you I’d be in the stirrups that day, even if I had just went in to get antibiotics for a cold! This poor woman slipped through the cracks of our healthcare system and never had any follow through or comphrensive care in her life I guess. Either that or has avoided doctors her whole life, but I highly doubt that. ”

    Does it not occur to these people that it is none of their business? I bet the best friend of the poster has presented EVICENDE (there is plenty) about how damaging and useless these fishing expeditions are- why can’t she just accept it? How dare these people police and bully someone they call their best friend? Why does it hurt them this much someone choses to live differently? I do not buy it that she worries for her- then she would respect her autonomy! Sounds like a frenemy not a true friend. (Mines bitch together with me when it comes to such oppressive, costly and dubious practices and the NHS cervical screening programme. Actually one of them has sent me the crying boy poster in an email accompanied by very, very crude swearing. My boyfriend has gotten very angry about that poster too, and he agrees with me about the futility of such “healthcare”. What a lucky, very lucky girl I am!)

    • Alex says:

      That woman is outright stating that the doctor makes their own move & the patient doesn’t decide what happens to them. And she’s acting like it’s a deprival for someone to NOT be in this situation, themselves. What a bitch!

      Did your “friend” actually sent you that poster & curse at you?! That’s unbelievable (well, not really)! Try asking if she wants to do the honors herself- I bet that causes a bit of jam. It’s really only as vulgar as the situation is, because they’re trying to orchestrate all these things going on.

      Try accusations, too. If you were to bring it up like this: “Do you want me to have something happen to me that’s against my alignment?” or “Do you want me to get a disease/injury/miscarriage?” Someone’s got to pretty directly clash with you at that point & can’t say “I just care about you.” As you said: they’d respect your autonomy & also they’d actually take into account the composition of the situation. If they really cared they’d be able to drop the previous esteem they held something in.

      Not to tell you how to do things in your relationship, but have you ever told him how lucky you are to be with him? Things like that really can make the guy’s day in a big way.

      • Karen says:

        Alex- just to clarify, my Friend has cursed because the poster made her so angry. She knows much better than to ever have these revolting tests (or to try to bully me)…

    • Ro says:

      There was also another very disturbing comment which said something to the extent of: “How can you be okay with a 33 year old women never having a pap? She’s never really gone through a rite of passage to womanhood. This is something a mother goes through with her daughter. I didn’t want my first exam but what woman does? None of us but our mothers made us go, went with us, and got us on birth control ‘just in case’. Everyone has sex and I am sure this woman has and will. She could have cancer or STDs who knows. She should be on birth control, even if just to lower risk of cancer. It’s an essential part of women’s healthcare. I don’t think women should be able to refuse these exams and they should be mandatory. It’s going to end up costing society more in the end.” Some of that was taken directly from the comment, some of it was paraphrased. It truly is disturbing that women think this way. As for birth control being used to lower cancer risk, it lowers the risk for some cancers but increases the risk for others. Not to mention it can cause blood clots and any time you put any sort of chemical or medication into your body, there are some sort of side effects. Some aren’t severe or even noticeable, but it always alters the body in some way. Furthermore, birth control should be a personal decision. What about those who don’t believe in using it because of their spirituality or religion? That should definitely be respected. Not everyone has sex. There are people who never have and there are people who never will. Some are asexual and some choose to be celibate. That’s life. Lastly, I don’t understand how a woman refusing gyno exams costs society. Also, I’m very concerned with the comment that these exams should be made mandatory. If you want them for yourself and have made an informed decision – then more power to you! That being said, everyone should be able to choose how they take care of their bodies. Some people are very medical and rely on science. Others take a more holistic approach and think of things from a more spiritual and natural perspective. All should be respected. Not taunted, bullied, or harrassed for making an informed decision.

      • ladyprotips says:

        Ro,

        I’ve always found it so strange that mothers force their daughters to get pelvic exams. I know I started seeing an OB/GYN when I was 11 simply because everyone in my family is in medicine and I knew her personally from social things, so I asked if she’d be my doctor. I didn’t know what gynecologists actually did, just that she was a doctor for women and she delivered babies. She tried to make me get a Pap smear then, but my mom told her she was full of it. I’ve never really been delusional about Pap smears. My dad is a pathologist and he was always very open with me about HPV’s role in cervical cancer, and I always knew a fair bit about it simply because my mother was one of the very very very few who had cervical cancer at 25 (we know this because my dad was the one who diagnosed it). It was caught completely by accident, she had been seeing a gynecologist every month since she was 14 (she had a deformed reproductive system and her period had no way out, so they had to deal with it every month until she was able to get vaginal reconstructive surgery). Because if all of this, I was very confused when I suddenly couldn’t get my birth control anymore when I was 18. I remember being in the nail shop and talking about it, and my nail lady said with horror, “You haven’t had a Pap smear yet?! You’re 18!” I told her that no, and I definitely wouldn’t be getting one until at least 21, probably later since I knew I wouldn’t be sexually active at that point. Her response? “But honey you HAVE to get one. Your parents are going to miss you so much!” My mom told people like that (and there were a lot who tried to tell her that her cancer was hereditary) that they could fuck right off.

        I was talking to a friend about this (she wants to do ER med, I want to do OB/GYN), and she said she could never do GYN because she could never deal with mothers trying to force their daughters to get checked out. She said she’d get too angry. I know I fully plan to threaten to call CPS with every mother who tries it with my future patients. It’s so unethical to allow someone to give consent for a procedure of any kind to happen to someone else’s body.

      • Ro says:

        ladyprotips – I’m sorry to hear your mother got diagnosed with such a terrible disease (as well as the deformed reproductive system), especially so early on in life, but I’m glad to know she ended up being okay! I’m glad to know your mother always stood up for you! Mine always has as well. Recently (as in the last 20 or so years) it’s become the norm for girls to go to the gyno as soon as they get their first period, even if they’ve never been sexually active and are asymptomatic. It’s wonderful that you’ll be standing up for the rights of your patients (and it sounds like your friend will be too)! If only there were more doctors out there like that; willing to stand up for people. I’m not saying there aren’t doctors out there who do, it’s just that you rarely hear of it.

      • Karen says:

        Ladyprotips- I just imagine the nail shop lady and the other nosy strangers shouting at a 18yrs old girl “you haven’t been sexually assaulted yet?!” “You haven’t had your vagina penetrated against your consent yet, haven’t been coerced into allowing strangers to violate you.. but that’s the rite of womanhood!” Would she have reacted in such a manner, if she had caught you, say, eating trans-fats mixed with sugar from a bucket? I bet no… but not having these exams, this downright outrages these mob of responsible women, and they react so out of concern for the life and well-being of a total stranger, for whose boundaries and bodily autonomy they show no whatsoever respect.. aha, sure…

      • Alex says:

        Ro- You’re totally right about everything. Whoever posted that is a complete piece of shit! Look how she (?) talks: Especially about the part that these tests should be forced & woman shouldn’t be able to refuse being probed! If a guy says something to the effect of: “The only choice the woman should have is whether the lights are on or off,” that sets off some warning bells, doesn’t it? Willing to bet it was the FATHER pushing this on the girl, that would be considered everything that it actually is.

        And “How can you be OKAY with…?” Seems like someone presumes being a combined person. One more thing: who cares about what the costs are to a society that would do these sorts of things? That’s like worrying about an enemy losing their paycheck!

      • Alex says:

        Karen- I got a good laugh out of your post (because of how stupid those people would look). It’s interesting that people criticize the middle east about virginity testing & such, but the same sort of thing in another country is not only acceptable conduct- it’s applaudable!

        They’ve got a strange concept of womanhood. It fits in with that whole liberated/independant/strong theme to be commandeered by doctors or whoever else that acts this way? Very impressive. Not at all something to ridicule or, more accurately, ridicule BACK.

        Why don’t women hate the other women that are trying to bully and, indeed, molest them? It seems like women tend to start directing that hate inward & then sabotaging themselves as if they deserve these things to happen. I’m not trying be scathing or anything, but never understood that. It’s like the concept of honor in all those Japanese movies: where someone treats someone else badly & that is somehow reflects badly on the person they did that to. That someone is dishonorable BY treating somoene badly that doesn’t deserve it.

      • Alex says:

        Ladyprotips- That’s good that you’d block the situation & report them for doing things like that. It’s child abuse to do something like that- just like if they were to do that themselves.

        It’s pretty shocking that more women don’t just ahndle things themselves. Plenty of women cut their own hair & wax their own legs- I’d think a situation like this it’d be even more of a pertinent thing. Never mind that cutting your hair wrong doesn’t cause miscarriages!

  122. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    Alex
    It makes you realize how successful these programs have been, many women fear even mentioning they don’t have/want pap tests or mammograms, why?
    I don’t see the same level of fear, intimidation and concern if we choose not to have bowel screening.
    It’s the control thing that changes the dynamic, the medical profession makes decisions for women, they control us and our bodies, we’re expected to do as we’re told. These attitudes have been normalized in women’s healthcare, so many women see it as appropriate, they’ll side with the medical profession and attack and judge the non-compliant or questioning woman. The release of real information is regarded as reckless and dangerous, why? Because “they” have decided all women will screen, it’s just a Q of “capturing” us, and anything that empowers us to fight back is a huge threat.

    Amazingly, even in 2014, most agree real information is a threat to these programs and so, inappropriate. Even in the UK with more discussion about informed consent, women are still being treated like farm animals at the surgery level. “Screen or you can’t be my patient” etc.
    This is not screening, it’s a misuse of power, to deny us our rights; they accept risk on our behalf…resulting in lots of worry, distress and harm.
    It shows you just how powerful these groups are…that so few women even today take the time to check the evidence or even view screening as an option, something we can reasonably decline. I recently read an article on falling screening rates and it was disappointing to see so many women say, “I know we have to screen, but why can’t they develop something less invasive”…etc.
    There is that word “must”…we’re been told that for decades so most accept screening is something we MUST do. (of course, there is a non-invasive option, but it’s not being offered to women)
    Some of the most intelligent women I know are passionate screeners, (quite a few have been “saved”…of course) they spout the screening “story” and lecture women from their moral high ground, IMO, they’ve been completely conned. I think it takes a certain type of mind to look at this subject with an open mind…despite the never ending propaganda, pressure and lack of real information.
    That’s why I’m sure the people on this forum share a few valuable traits…and one of them is probably: I think for myself, I do not blindly follow the herd.

    • Alex says:

      Yes, it certainly does. The whole MUST thing always shocks me. After all, what happens is what occurs. I’m pretty sure if any of these women were told you MUST forgive your husband if he cheats on you or punches you in the face, they’d take issue with it. Certainly, there are no “MUSTS” in the bedroom (there’s plenty of things this could apply to- including “playing doctor”). That weird “reverse down-trodden” mentality that a lot of people have is always startling. It’s like it’s not being self-controlled to not be controlled by someone else.

      I imagine a lot of women do make arguments, particularly when they’re young. Even when people make an argument & really hit the nail on the head, what happens? What happens is people start grasping at straws & saying things like “Well, why MUST someone not do this?” or “Why does someone HAVE TO protect their kids?” or whatever uses the same wording the other person used to present their argument as wrong. Usually, it’s making their argument out to be something that undermines self-defense, oddly enough.

      It suprises the hell out of me how many people don’t really get that there’s no way to say soemthing so that someone else can’t lie or twist your words!

  123. ColeyX says:

    Hi everyone,

    Yesterday I was told the verdict of the independent panel that reviewed my complaint. They ruled that the doctor had committed a wrongdoing and issued him an official warning.

    I’m happy that this is over and that it ended on a positive note. Like I said last time, I’m sure he’ll now be scared of doing anything like this again.

    Thanks for all the help. I’m sure I’ll post here again. x

  124. Chrissy (UK) says:

    Coley X, that’s a really good result. He will certainly think twice before he does anything like this again. You are to be applauded for having the courage to make an official complaint, as most don’t and I have no doubt that you have saved other women from having to endure this type of abuse in the future. Well done!

    • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

      I agree, but it frustrates me that a man who basically uses his position to take advantage is treated differently to others. I wonder if he’s had other official warnings.
      I also, wonder whether this is a clever way of the hospital “dealing” with these matters, keeping them from the heavies, the Police or Medical Council.
      Call me suspicious, but that’s what many organizations will attempt to do, the Church did it for decades, “dealing” with these matters in-house.
      Not to take anything away from you, ColeyX, you’ve done an amazing thing for women, you stood up to your abuser.
      Also, from an evidentiary point of view, it was his word against yours, (I offered the exam, she agreed, I was being thorough v your version (the truth)…I know who I and most people would believe…)
      He could argue his only crime was not knowing routine breast exams are inappropriate and no longer recommended, so he was out-of-date and needs a refresher. (I wonder how many routine breast exams he offers to 60 year old women) Also, I imagine many UK doctors are still tacking routine breast exams onto consults for the Pill etc. So when there is medical “casualness” with the female body, it facilitates predators.
      Thank you for keeping us posted and yes, it will remind him that it’s never safe to take advantage, the woman might just be another ColeyX. Good luck with your career.

  125. Moo says:

    Probably he will not stop. He will only get better at picking victims who will not complain so he will not get caught, I hope someone else on staff at that hospital knows about what he did and checks up. Apparently if a doctor knows about another doctor abusing a patient, they are obliged to report them. However in reality how often will this happen.

    I applaud the young women who went thorough with the complaint. I do not think that the punishment was harsh enough. However maybe he will have this on record and hopefully next time he gets caught something will happen.

    • Alex says:

      Congratulations to ColeyX!

      Either one is possible. I think he should have gotten into the same trouble that anyone else would get into if they were to be groping a woman on a train or something, at least. It’s not right that when they do something the reaction to it is diluted. It’s like this: “Oh, you’ve proven yourself a threat & can’t be trusted. Well, here’s a response that impedes nothing & carry on.”

      Maybe he’ll be driving & worrying about how he had a complaint filed against him & he’ll crash into a tree. Problem solved.

      • Nicely put Alex: “Maybe he’ll be driving & worrying about how he had a complaint filed against him & he’ll crash into a tree. Problem solved.” :)

        ColeyX good for you! It sounds like it was a lot of hard work and I appreciate being able to share in feeling empowered and vindicated thanks to your efforts. Thank you for sharing your story and for letting us know the good news.

      • Alex says:

        Glad you liked it! I DO hope for these things, but my luck is rarely that good.

        I’m curious about something: When you discuss these things with people, what are their reactions like? I know it can vary widely from person to person, but do you generally catch a lot of bullshit in response? If so, what do you hear?

        I’ve noticed frequently that when I’d discuss these things it was like I was saying something they always wanted to say, themselves. I guess calling something for what it is or simply bolstering autonomy (particularly with this type of subject) is something women tend to like. I’ve also noticed that the women that are closer to my generation (mid-20s to early 30s) are much less down-trodden in that way.

        Oddly enough- so are some of the older women (70s to 80s)! Whenever a discussion came up that was about things of this nature (newspaper articles, plots of T.V. shows, mentioning one thing to explain another, etc…) they seemed to be more real about things. They didn’t think a layer of bullshit changed anything, basically.

  126. A male gynecologist in Pennsylvania has been charged with indecent assault (http://www.sfgate.com/news/crime/article/NW-Pa-gynecologist-charged-with-indecent-assault-5210506.php). This is exactly why it is wise for women to avoid male gynecologists.

    Misty

  127. ColeyX says:

    Hey,

    Just a couple of things I wanted to share. First is this revolting story of a podiatrist that made women unnecessarily strip and filmed them.

    http://metro.co.uk/2012/12/20/foot-doctor-asked-more-than-100-patients-to-strip-3326052/

    The shocking thing is, the police found 137 tapes that he had hidden but still didn’t prosecute.

    The second is something that a good friend of mine told me about recently that actually relates to my case. She sent me this link. It’s a video of a model called Leilani Dowding having a live breast exam on TV.

    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/269977/lelani_dowding_breast_examination/

    She was relatively famous here in the UK a while ago, mainly for being a Page 3 model in The Sun. Initially I didn’t want to watch it, but curiosity made me. It was done on a daytime show called This Morning a long time ago, to raise breast cancer awareness.

    I praise her courage for being brave enough to do something like this on national television but the whole thing is super creepy. One thing I noticed was how the doctor kept his hand on her back almost the entire time. She looks uncomfortable. For all I know he’s a complete professional and didn’t have any inappropriate thoughts but isn’t it possible he was enjoying the opportunity to touch a topless model? Maybe joke with his friends about it after?

    Leilani deserves loads of praise for subjecting herself to such a humiliating process to help raise awareness but it seems like the show just wanted a ratings boost. What do you guys think?

    • Alex says:

      Story #1:
      The foot doctor thing is appaling on a lot of levels. Sure, someone shouldn’t just go along with something just because the doctor says it or tries to do it- but that doesn’t excuse someone for making the attempt. Someone’s not off the hook if they strangle someone & say “Well, I’m innocent because they didn’t get out of it,” either. No big suprise that the cops didn’t go after him for that, but that’s me. Maybe they were paid off?

      Interjecting arbitrary comportment into a medical situation so as to permit visual access to, or any kind of contact with, sexual areas is still an instance of iatrogenic attack. They are steering the situation to go this way, that’s exactly what “comportment” means. They’re not being coercive, deceptive, threatening, or anything subtle- they’re just being direct in their methods. [Which is somewhat of a subtle tactic on it's own, isn't it? This is a little bit like someone getting punched in the face in the hosptial, instead of being chemically sedated, as an attack to render someone unconscious.]

      I guess it doesn’t strictly have to be using medical techniques to do something like that. If someone were to go to a doctor or hospital to ask them questions about allergies or something & the doctor told them to get naked so they could have this conversation, that is definitely acting inappropriately. They are steering the medical situation in a pervy way.

      Story #2:
      I think that model was just trying to score publicity points. Over here in the states, it’s suprisingly common for a celebrity to do a porno in a subtle way (they’ll make a sex tape that just so happens to get “lost” & then they’re super famous- if they were at all before).

      If she were to do something to raise awareness about iatrogenic attack or things not working as advertised (could have sworn there was something about breast exams along those lines, too), then I’d give her credit. Why didn’t she whip them out & show women how to do this for herself? That’s, at least, a trustable situation (since a woman isn’t going to sabotage herself). She still could have been topless.

      What about the potential for misdiagnosis, overtreatment, and complications? Any & all of these things can happen deliberately or accidently. Probably deliberately considering:
      (1) That there’s repeat costs from additional procedures & follow-ups (possibly with incentive payments).
      (2) There’s plenty of potential for ulterior motives for men as well as women & that might just include getting a thrill out of lying to someone or screwing up their life
      (3) The simple fact that the medical curriculum that these people are trained in might very well be be garbage to begin with- “Blue Ribbon Bullshit,” as I call it.

      Also, I don’t figure that this would be all that difficult to demonstrate on some kind of doll. She definitely seems reluctant & one would presume this isn’t something she’d want to do- maybe that’s supposed to ba an attention-grabber? Like the idea of: “If someone does something counter-intuitively, it must be a good thing.”

  128. Moo says:

    On the topic of hidden cameras in doctor’s clinics.

    If there is camera in the reception area fine but it should be obvious because it is supposed to deter crime. There many even be notice CCTV in use. However cameras are not supposed to be used in areas where there is an expectation of privacy such as washrooms, change rooms, examination and treatment areas. It is illegal unless consent is given. A patient might request that an exam by a doctor be videoed for insurance purposes but the video will be the property of the patients lawyer. Also if a doctor has child patients and videos them undressed it is making child pornography. These are serious crimes.

    Look up nannycam and you will see that wireless cameras are available that are hidden in clocks, smoke detectors, plants, toys, books etc. how would anyone know if they were being videoed at all?

    • Alex says:

      You know what’s weird? Kids get into all kinds of trouble for sending pictures of themselves or someone their own age over the phone (that whole “sexting” thing) and that’s considered child pornography. Yet, when someone has hidden cameras in their office where they do all kinds of inappropriate things, that’s not considered wrong OR evidence.

      Apparently there’s some risk, at least in some places, where people getting pictures developed that have nudity (even if it’s their own) can get arrested for it! One wouldn’t presume that though. One also wouldn’t presume that the cops/doctors would put them through all kinds of things that actually ARE assaultive in that way. What they did hurts no one & didn’t even involve the surrounding community.

      I’d say forced naked posturing, much less imposed probing, are much more threatening to the person & society in general than people taking naked pictures of themselves. This is especially true if this is done to kids.

      • Moo says:

        I am quite sure that using a hidden camera to record images or video of a medical procedure where someone is naked or partially without consent IS A CRIME in my country. How often doctors are prosecuted, what investigations are done, what evidence needs to be collected, how the crime is detected and how many complaints filed – —- all a huge mystery.

        But now I am going to be aware of what nannycams are on the market. I am going to refuse some exams from certain practitioners and not remove clothing. However who is to know that even a woman practitioner could be unaware her employer or landlord has installed spy cams? Is there some way?

  129. It is so sad about how this doctor: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/toronto/toronto-doctors-aggressive-exams-unprofessional-but-not-sex-abuse-committee-rules/article16793993/ did 18 breast and pelvic exams on a woman in two years and the committee did not see this as sexual abuse. This is exactly why it is hard for doctors to get in trouble.

    Misty

    • Alex says:

      I honestly think it’s more that they see sexual abuse as a good thing, rather than not seeing it when it occurs.

      If he decided to “go rogue” or be a “renegade doctor” with pretty much anything else (especially if it was something like giving a patient something that actually worked to kill cancer) he’d be gone. This sort of thing, it’s up to him to customize things as he sees fit- if that happens to fly in the face of what is set down as medical guidelines, so be it. Isn’t it interesting that they “suggest” things to the doctors, but the doctors “require” things from the patient. Or maybe they just “mandate/order/demand/command/dictate” things?

      The doctors basically think that they can act at their own discretion, damn the composition of the situation & the results. They figure it’s someone pushing them around to comport their own medical situation. A warped psychology, to say the least. Imagine pointing that out to them? They’d just accuse you of being that way- since there’s no way to say something so that they can’t lie or twist your words on their own.

      Also, a lot of their ego rests on having expertise in something that’s NOT bullshit- if it IS bullshit, however, that’ll kick the chair out from under their arrogance. Their addiction is cut off at the source. They figure that this schooling makes them superior to the patient & that this means that their decisioons outmatch the patient’s. So it would also kick the chair out from under what they see as a means of countering the patient.

  130. Look at how a male doctor who was addicted to pornography took pictures of patients and children in surgery at http://www.newsshopper.co.uk/news/11026189.Dirty_Swanley_doctor_Barend_Delport_struck_off_for_taking_indecent_photographs/. This is exactly why all surgery patients should have maximum amount of modesty. There are so many surgeries such as knee, tonsillectomy, etc that should not require patients to take their underwear off.

    Misty

    • Thanks Misty for this interesting link. I agree all surgery patients should have maximum amount of modesty, and also think they need to be aware of the potential for misconduct. At least in the case of Dr. George Doodnaught some justice was served:
      “Dr. George Doodnaught, the Toronto anesthesiologist found guilty of sexually assaulting 21 women while they were under conscious sedation in hospital, was sentenced to 10 years in prison Tuesday.

      In delivering the sentence, Judge David McCombs called the crimes “shocking and abhorrent.” He said “a very substantial sentence” was necessary to send a clear message about the abhorrence of the crimes, which he called “reprehensible in the extreme.” http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/dr-george-doodnaught-gets-10-years-for-sex-assaults-1.2550308

      It was encouraging to see the hefty penalty handed down by Judge David McCombs. Too often these cases are dismissed/excused/covered up and all too often the implicit message is that it is acceptable to “mistreat” women in healthcare settings.

    • Moo says:

      Myou can refuse to take off clothing if it will not interfere with the day surgery. I was told that if something happened and I had to be taken into the operating room then they would cut it off or blood could get on it. Fine. I can replace clothing but not my dignity when my modesty is denied me.

  131. Check out this article: Let’s Stop Denying That Doctors Can Be Sexual Predators (http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/beverly-akerman/george-doodnaught-rape_b_4873644.html).

    Misty

  132. Check out the story of a woman who was sexually abused by Dr. Doodnaught, the anesthesiologist in Toronto at http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/02/28/why-victim-of-toronto-anesthesiologists-sex-assault-wants-you-to-know-her-name/.

    Misty

    • Moo says:

      The Doodnaught’ crime. He was denied bail during the trial. I cheer that. Two victims challenged the automatic victim naming ban and came forward. They were not afraid. All victims of sexual assault in Canada can have a name ban and some will never testify in court especially if they are children or have disability.

      I heard a few women had complained that something happened to them but the hospital said it was just the effects of the anaesthetics. It was only when one women went to the police with evidence (semen on her face) that the investigation started.

  133. ColeyX says:

    Hey,

    The Sun Newspaper here in the UK did a campaign two days ago called ‘Check ‘Em Tuesday’ to raise breast cancer awareness. They formed a partnership with a charity called ‘Coppafeel’.

    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/features/check-em-tuesday/5489308/90-survive-if-diagnosed-early-on-so-remember-to-Check-em-Tuesday.html

    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/features/check-em-tuesday/5483734/how-to-check-your-breasts.html

    There was a mixed response but mostly positive overall. Even some anti-Page 3 campaigners have praised The Sun for backing a good cause. But lots of people, inc other charities, have criticised the campaign for trivialising, sexualising the issue etc.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/media/press/breast-cancer-charities-criticise-the-suns-new-page-three-check-em-tuesday-for-trivialising-the-disease-9168517.html

    Personally I’ve got mixed views. I think it’s great that a popular media outlet is promoting a great cause and if even one girl checks herself after seeing this and catches it early, then it’s worth it. I know all the girls in that header photo personally from shoots I’ve done and they’re all lovely. They’re obviously doing it with the best intentions, as is the paper.

    But I do think it’s a bit awkward using a young model like Rosie (even though she’s actually almost 24, not 22 like it says on the cover) when the condition generally affects middle aged/older women. Using pictures of a model in her pants weirdly sexualises & fetishises breast exams in my opinion. It seems like the way they presented it is aimed more at men.

    What do you guys think?

    • Alex says:

      I don’t have anything against women checking themselves for lumps & such, but if they make normal stuff out to be a “warning sign” it puts things “back in the doctor’s hands”. Sorry for the pun, but it’s literally true.

      Using the hot models might be geared directly at women (like using good-looking people in any advertisment). Also, it might be geared at women through men (like when they did that guilt-trip campaign with the crying child- except with a different subject). Now it’s about linking this to the quality of attractiveness. Just like when letting someone else make their own decisions with your own body is inaptly linked to “empowerment.”

      Also, it would be potentially likely that the guy might not argue with the hot girl in the magazine, so he wouldn’t be as likely to be a source of support. You can bet that some guy looks at that magazine as something to take in the bathroom with him (even if it’s not as revealing as others, it’s just different from the typical magazines). Kind of like how someone can see all kinds of stuff in Playboy or Hustler, but a celebrity nip-slip might still draw a lot of attention.

      I think it was a real “sex sells” approach. They definitely didn’t go with the three chicks at the middle of the page!

    • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

      Actually clinical breast exams and breast self-examination have not been recommended in the UK, Australia and in many other countries for many years, neither is of any proven benefit, but they lead to anxiety and excess biopsies.
      Breast awareness is being promoted now, just taking note of the look of your breasts in the mirror every morning after showering and seeing a doctor if you notice any changes.

      They often use images of young women having mammograms as well, why?
      It certainly has the potential to mislead and confuse: should young women get mammograms? Also, I agree with you it does combine sexuality with medicine and that’s never a good thing. Papscreen used a sexy campaign to promote pap testing here, I thought it was inappropriate, but then IMO, everything they do is inappropriate and disrespectful.

      • Alex says:

        I hesitate to ask , but how did they use a “sex sells” angle with that?

        You know what else is annoying? How it comes off like a woman’s a prude if you aren’t on board with that kind of stuff. Also, it’s like a guy is supposed to be so mindless that a good-looking woman in (or out of) a bikini can get him to approve of anything. And then the guy being that stupid is a gripe on it’s own!

        I don’t think it’s really appropriate for them to try to sell anything. In this case, it’s a high-risk, low-utility way of dedecting something that’s massively rare. All this would be a problem no matter what dynamics were involved. Invasiveness is it’s own problem, and I’d think even as a means to an end- that would be a problematic methodology. If imposed, however, that is a pretty serious attack.

        Regardless of however “low-key” the manner of doing it is (since there’s GENERALLY no wrestling or screaming involved), the situation still consists of an imposed interface with a sexual area (specifically a penetrative one). If someone said “Let me play doctor on you, or you get evicted” that would be a coercive attack if accomplished.

  134. Look at an article about how a former policeman who became a nurse sexually abused a number of patients at http://koin.com/2014/03/19/ex-er-nurse-jeffrey-mcallister-faces-another-new-sex-charge/.

    Misty

    • Moo says:

      The crime background check system apparently does not work in some places. If he had so many charges against him the there is no way he should have been working in a hospital at all.

      The criminal background check is just a huge hassle and barrier to those of us who are not offenders.

  135. Look at how 1,200 pictures of women’s private parts that were found in Dr. Levy’s case at http://www.wtop.com/41/3590613/Hopkins-gynecologist-case-yields-1200-naked-patient-pics. This is exactly why women should always avoid male gynecologists. I am sure that many male gynecologists have taken pictures of women’s private parts without ever being caught.

    Misty

    • ladyprotips says:

      Misty, the idea that all, or even most, male gynecologists get a sexual thrill is both false and extremely offensive. I’ve worked with many, many, many male OB/GYNs and am even related to a few. You want to know how many I’ve ever suspected got anything sexual from it? One. You’re MUCH more likely to run into an abusive female OB/GYN (and no, not because she’s a lesbian).

      • Chrissy (UK) says:

        Whether or not all or most male gynaecologists get a sexual thrill from their patients is unquantifiable. We have no way of knowing for sure. Certainly though, SOME of them cross the line and end up in the courts for sexual assault. What I believe Misty is saying is that there is an element of risk in seeing a male gyn and the only way to eliminate the risk is to see a female.
        I certainly don’t find her comment offensive and she is entitled to her opinion as you are yours.

      • Well said Chrissy. I agree Misty is not saying all male doctors are poised to sexually assault female patients. Misty is moderate in what she says, especially given the huge numbers of complaints she receives from female patients who have been victims of sexual abuse at the hands of male doctors and other health care providers. She also hears complaints from men who have been abused, and from patients who have been abused by male and female medical providers (not always doctors). However, the vast majority of sexual abuse cases are attributable to male health care providers. Misty is a wonderful advocate for female and male patients. Misty helps to raise awareness and works to prevent sexual abuse in medical settings.

      • Alex says:

        I would figure that they wouldn’t advertise it if they did- particularly to a woman. Kind of hard to have a “bros before hos” type of angle from women (and mark my words- it happens). They don’t make an obvious point about risks & inaccuracies, either. Same with extra financial incentives.

        I’ve got to ask why you figure you’d be more likely to run into an abusive woman in that profession? Also, I’d presume aggressive lesbianism is definitely a possibility, but why would that not be the reason?

      • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

        Ladyprotips,
        How could you possibly know what’s going on in the mind of another person?
        I also, doubt a doctor would alert you to the fact he’s enjoying the view or touching.
        I view with suspicion any male doctor who claims he “doesn’t notice” a beautiful woman, it doesn’t ring true. I’d have more respect if he admitted he noticed and even enjoyed in some cases, but always acted as a professional, never stepping over the line.
        It’s up to individual women, we have a right to choose. I’ve never needed the services of a gyn, but if I did, I’d see an older female doctor who comes recommended by several of my friends, simply because I would feel more comfortable with a woman, my choice.

      • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

        Well said guys, also, a quick look at the Medical Board shows all of the cases, as far back as I could go, involve male doctors. (for inappropriate conduct) There are also, a few complaints involving male nurses, when you consider females greatly outnumber males in that profession, it’s concerning.
        If there are cases involving female doctors, they must be few and far between.

        Female doctors might be rude, male doctors might be rude, but the stats show men are FAR more likely to end up at the Medical Board for inappropriate conduct. Also, we have to remember MOST suspect conduct is never reported.
        Predators are also, very cunning and know how to control and manipulate their victims.
        There are also, so many subtle ways to take advantage now, as we’ve seen with the recent cases of male doctors using pens and phones to take photos of women during intimate exams.

        There is no doubt in my mind it’s safer for women to see male doctors, especially young women. Even if a woman feels comfortable with a male gyn/urologist etc. the “risk” of a problem is higher. If a woman is content to take the chance, that’s her decision, but abuse in the consult room can cause lifelong psychological damage, and can mean depression, avoiding all medical care into the future, PTSD etc. Why take the risk?

        As a young woman I was pressured (like all women) to have pap tests and routine breast & pelvic exams with a male doctor, NONE of it was necessary. (and pap tests should be our choice) These things were NEVER clinical requirements for the Pill, but women were trapped, submit or no Pill. IMO, these women were set up for assault by the mostly male medical profession. So the Pill was out for me, the price was far too high.

        I saw the distress and damage caused to so many of my friends, I KNEW these male doctors were taking advantage, these things were not clinical requirements AND I (and others) noticed the attractive women got the works while overweight and unattractive women (in the eyes of the doctor anyway) got the Pill with a blood pressure check.

        So IMO, it’s up to individual women to decide…I noticed one of our top models had a baby recently and used a male obstetrician. Of course, it would be nonsense to suggest this man did not “notice” her attractiveness, but this woman either doesn’t mind or has convinced herself he doesn’t really “see” her, that medical training changes the way a man views a beautiful woman. Some women also, feel it’s more normal for a male to view them so intimately.
        Regardless, that’s their business and their choice.

        Misty is doing some great work, for too long we’ve avoided the elephant in the room, women were ridiculed if they wanted a female doctor and male doctors got away with shocking abuse, sometimes for decades, thankfully, that’s changing…and women are now more likely to stand their ground, challenge and report suspect conduct. (to the Medical Board AND to the Police)

      • Mary says:

        Yes Elizabeth, I just read of a male nurse who has been accused of sexually abusing an elderly female patient.Apparently another female patient complained about this before but the complaint was dismissed by the internal board. They assumed she was a little confused. How utterly patronising.The second woman’s complaint is taken more seriously becuase the women could give the exact time of the assault and it coincides with the video of him entering her room. How many male nurses are there and why does sexual assault always seem to be committed by male nurses- it must be a pretty high percentage.

  136. Kleigh says:

    My boyfriend has told me when we have kids he only wants me to have female doctors for labor if I even choise a hospital birth. I whould feel terrible having another man touching me that’s not my husband I don’t care if he is a doctor. I really belive males doctors do get pleaser out of gyn exams and breat exams. my aunt said her doctor got seemed excited when he was doing a breat exam on her and he got an erection. she was so grosed out.

  137. Elizabeth (Aust) says:

    “There is no doubt in my mind it’s safer for women to see male doctors, especially young women”
    Obviously that should read, “it’s safer to see FEMALE doctors” etc.

  138. Leah says:

    I had breast aug and was under anasthetic and 2 days later when bruising stated to come out on my Breast and ribs also my genitals inner outer lips and clitoris were severely bruised then 2 days after that I had a urinary tract infection.my doctor said bruising can travel anywhere but I’m worried something happened when I was under anasthetic.

    • Alex says:

      That’s horrifying! I’ve got to say it: It does sound like something happened. The doctor is full of shit. The discoloration might spread out to a surrounding area due to gravity, but you have bruising in two separate areas not a trail down the whole front of your body. Plus, that doesn’t cover a urinary tract infection.

      I hate to be so blatant about it & I’m not trying to rub it in your face, but any interface with sexual areas as a product of someone else’s decision-making is an attack. That just so happens to be the areas you’re having issues with after being unconscious around these people? Chest & ribs might be from surgery (but that might be different depending on the kind of surgery), but that’s not going to just pick up & move to the area between your legs & give you a urinary infection.

      There might be home testing kits for this sort of thing, I don’t know. Blood & urine testing works for STDs & there are pills that go beyond the morning-after pill if you’re worried about pregnancy (as well as various herbal things to generate that effect). Just thought I should add that in, because even as a means to an end some things might be a problematic methodology & they do try to work all kinds of angles (to include steering things in their own direction around the woman).

    • ChasUK says:

      I Can’t even imagine how you must be feeling and I am very sorry for you. Was it a teaching hospital as they will let students practice on you whilst out for the count. Absolutely shocking if you did not consent to this. I would certainly be making a complaint as it would continue on and on. They must be held accountable for their actions. Don’t delay the complaint.

    • Elizabeth (Aust) says:

      Leah, you can end up badly bruised after breast surgery, I had a breast reduction many years ago and was bruised and sore for 10 days or so.
      I think surgeons can be quite rough when we’re out to it. I had 4 impacted wisdom teeth out under GA and woke up with a badly swollen face, sore ribs and black eyes. I assume the sore ribs resulted from the oral surgeon resting on my chest to get some leverage.

      Also, I wonder whether they used a foley catheter, if you’re out for more than 2-3 hours they use a catheter, that “might” explain the genital soreness and the UTI.
      I can understand your concerns, I dread the thought of needing surgery in the future, I just don’t trust the system to act in my best interests when I’m not conscious to keep an eye on them.
      I’ve heard an expression, “what happens in surgery, stays in surgery”…
      I’d ask my surgeon/doctor whether a catheter was used during the procedure. Bruising can travel anywhere, what? That makes no sense.

    • ladyprotips says:

      Ouch, I’m really sorry :/

      Elizabeth is absolutely right, doctors are extremely rough during surgery. After I watched a c-section for the first time I fully understood why so many people feel beat up after surgery. They flop you around and are pretty rough when they’re tugging and pulling. I’d bet that’s the bruising on your breast and ribs, honestly.

      As for the genital bruising, it sounds like they put a catheter in, to be honest.

      • Kate (UK) says:

        If the bruising was indeed caused by a catheter, why didn’t her doctor explain this? Why did he lie to her?
        If nothing untoward happened, it’s unacceptable to brush off a patient’s concerns by telling them a fairy story. Smacks of arrogance or incompetence.

  139. Look at how a well-respected male gynecologist was accused of taking nude pictures of a female patient at http://arkansasnews.com/news/arkansas/paragould-doctor-accused-secretly-photographing-patient-nude. Look at how active this doctor is in his community at http://www.bectonclinic.com/doctor.htm. This is exactly why it is prudent to avoid male gynecologists.

    Misty

    • ladyprotips says:

      I agree with your mission, but the way you demonize men is ridiculous and needs to stay on radical, 2nd-wave feminist blogs. You’re perpetuating rape culture. Stop it.

      • Si says:

        Ladyprotips, I wasn’t aware that some categories of feminism are not acceptable on this blog.
        Just look at the stats – most sex offenders are cis men, though I don’t believe men are wired to be sexual predators; doing gender is a cultural construct and unfortunately parts of masculine culture are demeaning towards women.
        It would be great if we could access gynaecological care where the sex of the physician didn’t make a difference, but sadly it does, and just because we’d like to believe in a better world it doesn’t make it a reality.

      • ladyprotips, Misty is attempting to raise awareness in order to protect women from harm. She is not, as you say, “perpetuating rape culture”, nor is she “demonizing” men. To make that claim is IMO akin to victim blaming. In case you haven’t noticed, the women who visit this blog are generally supportive of each other and don’t attempt to give one another orders.

      • Karen says:

        From priests to humanitarian aid workers to lawyers to politicians, members of a professor close in- profession is a matter of identity. If you really want to be better, do not be a doctor first and foremost. Sorry but saying Misty should stop raising awareness about sexual abuse in medical setting because it “demonises men” sounds like something straight out of a male rights manifesto

      • ADM (Canada) says:

        I wasn’t going to get involved in this discussion but in some ways I agree with ladyprotips about the way that male Dr’s are portrayed. I also agree with the work that Misty has done in raising awareness about this issue. I wonder if the stats are skewed because women are more likely to report a male Dr than a female Dr for assault. Would a woman dismiss an assault by a female Dr because it was a female thinking that a female would never do that. Are assaults by female Dr’s under-reported.
        In some cases women do not have a choice of seeing a male Dr for a gynecological issue and I would hate for a woman due to the fear of being assaulted to not see a top rated surgeon for example and receive the best of care and have a successful surgery because the Dr is male versus getting lesser care from a female Dr. Personally I have had worse experiences with female Dr’s than I have with male. That does create a personal bias but in every professional field there are good and bad of both genders.

      • Alex says:

        How is she perpetuating rape culture? Is it raping the doctor to display their medical attacks or someone else’s? If only the first one were true! Turnabout is fair play, after all.

        She DOES mention female personnel, but the story tends to involve males. The frequency of that is not her fault & her reporting that situation is not demonizing men. She even mentions thing perpetuated against men & gives advice on how to prevent these things (like them backing guys into hernia checks for school sports).

      • F.L. says:

        ladyprotips,

        I don’t comment often, and wasn’t originally going to enter this discussion, but have a concern about the potential impact of your most recent comments.

        I do appreciate that you bring your perspective and voice to this blog, and that you take the time and make the effort to contribute. Your experience with having relatives involved in the profession, and with being personally involved gives you a perspective that is not shared by everyone, and which can provide helpful additional information to that provided by others. However, I am concerned that the content and tone of your most recent comments have not been the most helpful way of advancing your ideas.

        In my opinion, your argument about this blog perpetuating rape culture was a specious one to begin with, but not worth getting too concerned about, and you are certainly entitled to your opinion. However, you are now using your unproven (and in my opinion, incorrect) assumption and are wielding it as if it were a fact and are using it as a weapon to try and silence those who don’t share your view. It is a clever rhetorical approach to accuse someone you disagree with of contributing to rape culture – what a great way to try and silence a predominantly female audience. Your experiences do give you a perspective that is not necessarily shared by all contributors to this blog, but they do not give you a corner on the truth, and they don’t give you the right to tell other contributors that they are unwelcome and should only be posting on other blogs that you describe in derisive terms. It is not helpful to issue orders to others who post their comments, and it detracts from the points you are trying to advance – at least it does so for me.

        I hope that all healthcare providers can work collectively to improve the situation for women who have experiences like those described by those who comment on this blog. Given your experiences and role in healthcare it is likely that you have had the opportunity to make such positive contributions, and your input on this blog seems to reflect a very positive commitment to this, and is appreciated. I respect your input even though I may disagree with some specifics, and I hope that you continue to post your comments. However, I hope that you are sensitive to the possibility that others have different experiences, and that their perspective on issues of trust in relation to the medical industry might correspondingly be different from yours.

    • Moo says:

      I would like to know how this woman suspected she was being photographed. There are many types of hidden video cameras available. Just google “nannycam”. I also suspect that many male doctors are doing this. They are also getting their female staff to help them or not say anything about it. Some of them might be victims themselves but most might notice something strange going on.

  140. Sue,

    You are right that my goal is to help to raise awareness about how women can protect themselves.

    Misty

    • Misty all the work you’ve done, your research, writing, advocating, commenting, and support is much appreciated. All too often the victims of medical abuse are hushed up, told it didn’t happen, and the perpetrator is left free to abuse again. There is very little in the way of protection for women in medical settings, and when abuse does occur it can be devastating. Prevention is so important, but many women are completely trusting and unaware that sexual abuse is even a possibility. No one is saying ALL male medical personnel are poised to pounce on women, but unfortunately it does happen.

  141. Sue,

    Thank you for your encouragement! You are right that many people are too trusting of doctors. I had a great male pediatrician for a number of years. He never asked me to take any of my clothes off at all. He always welcomed my mom in the room with him. There are certainly some good male doctors.

    Medical Patient Modesty has received some heart breaking cases from women who were abused by doctors. I believe I mentioned this case, but we heard from a 18 year old virgin girl who was coerced by a male doctor at her college to have a pap smear and breast exam. She went in for swimmer’s ears.

    Misty

  142. Here’s another article about Dr. Becton at http://www.medicaldaily.com/arkansas-gynecologist-dr-paul-becton-took-nude-photos-patients-during-office-exams-without-consent. I tried replying to the nurse who believes that a female assistant or nurse always protect patients.

    My comments to her (I hope they will be approved) were:

    It is very likely that Dr. Becton had a nurse with him. Medical Patient Modesty has received numerous cases where nurses or female assistants were present with women who were abused by male doctors. I encourage you to check out this important article: Do Chaperones Really Protect Patients? at http://sexualmisconductbydoctors.com/chaperones.aspx.

    Many doctors especially male will have a nurse or assistant present for intimate exams such as breast, pelvic exams, and pap smears. The chaperone is the doctor’s employee so she looks out for him and she will often defend him even when he does something wrong. Keep in mind that the nurse or assistant is there to “protect” the doctor and is rarely on the patient’s side.

    There are times a nurse or assistant may know that the doctor is doing something wrong, but she may be afraid to expose his criminal activities for fear of being fired or facing discrimination in the workplace.

    The best thing a woman can do is to not go to a male doctor for intimate procedures.

    Misty

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