Is it right to sexually assist a paralysed patient?

  1. How do you deal with the paralysed patient with frequent erections? Have you ever been asked to assist? I've never faced this but have seen a heated discussion on another forum. Is it humane to bring the patient to ejaculation to relieve his frustration? Is it actually having sex with the patient? Is it permitted where you are? Could you do it?
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  2. 215 Comments

  3. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    It's not permitted (uh because that's sexual contact of course), and no i couldn't do it either. Nor if i were the pt. would i think it was expected or necessary of the nurse to help me either.
  4. by   Shotzie
    You have got to be kidding!!! Now that i have stopped my shocked laughter I'll answer the question.

    The question is basically "Can I help a patient have an orgasm?"
    Instead of thinking how much you would be helping this poor frustrated disabled patient who can't take care of his own sexual needs, think of it as the 50 year old cardiac patient who is afraid to have to work too hard or he might have another MI or the CVA patient who is not yet coordinated enough to do pelvic thrusts or quick hand motions. Do we help these people with their sexual needs?
    Of course we do not. We are nurses. Although we do get to see a lot of naked people, we are not prostitutes and unless you have gained extra training we do not function as sexual surrogates.

    I realize this is a funtional problem but it is not one that the nurse should be involved with...can't you just hear Jay Leno if word was to get out that this task might become a part of a nurse "special" talents?
  5. by   TweetiePieRN
    Quote from DavidFR
    How do you deal with the paralysed patient with frequent erections? Have you ever been asked to assist? I've never faced this but have seen a heated discussion on another forum. Is it humane to bring the patient to ejaculation to relieve his frustration? Is it actually having sex with the patient? Is it permitted where you are? Could you do it?
    I would never assist. For one, it is entirely a sexual act. It is totally not permitted, since it is considered a sex act! I am married, so playing with this guy's penis would be considered cheating. My job is not to sexually please anyone! That would basically be participating in prostitution since I am getting paid to take care of the patient. I am never concerned about strangers and their "need" for orgasms! My job as a nurse has NOTHING to do with easing any sexual frustrations. The patient would probably need to have a spouse or significant other do the deed. SO DAVIDFR...YOU DIDNT ANSWER YOUR OWN QUESTIONS!! WOULD YOU ASSIST? DO YOU THINK IT IS HUMANE TO HELP RELIEVE HIS FRUSTRATION? IS IT PERMITTED WHERE YOU ARE? COULD YOU..OR ARE YOU ALREADY DOING IT?
  6. by   Nurse Ratched
    Quote from TweetiePieRN
    COULD YOU..OR ARE YOU ALREADY DOING IT?
    The poster noted in his original post that he had never been faced with this. While I don't anticipate too many people are going to come down on the side of assisting a pt in this manner, it's just a question. Please keep your cool.
  7. by   TweetiePieRN
    [QUOTE=Nurse Ratched][QUOTE=TweetiePieRN]COULD YOU..OR ARE YOU ALREADY DOING IT?

    The poster noted in his original post that he had never been faced with this. While I don't anticipate too many people are going to come down on the side of assisting a pt in this manner, it's just a question. Please keep your cool.
    Because you cannot see me on the other side of the computer...i will forgive you! I am totally cool, collect, calm, and relaxed over here. These are just words on a screen, so obviously anyone reading will interpret my tone of voice however they would like. I boldfaced them so DavidFR can see them instead of having to rifle thru my entire message.
  8. by   gypsyatheart
    OMG! Uhhhh, yeah, I'm kind of wondering the same thing as Tweetie PieRN, Where do you stand on this DavidFR?
    I can not believe any professional nurse would even consider this question? What board were you on that this was being "hotly debated"? A nursing board? I find it hard to believe that any nurse would think that this is OK, and furthermore, agree to participate in that very sexual act. Having an orgasm is an optional "pleasure", if you will, not an ADL. A person needs to breathe, to eat, to drink, etc. A person does not need to have an orgasm... As much of a desirable activity that may be, it is certainly not a necessity!
    Again, I still can't believe any RN/LPN would even consider doing this with, that's right, with a patient! Well, any nurse that's in his/her right mind, that is.... :imbar
  9. by   SmilingBluEyes
    can't say I ever have been in that position. I think this would be HIGHLY unethical and WAY out of my scope, so I can't say I would ever assist either. I would suggest he/she find a partner (or call that person) to do this for him/her.
  10. by   Energizer Bunny
    LOLOLOL....this just makes me laugh (once I got over my shock, of course). OIY!
  11. by   manna
    Maybe the OP asked this question because they saw something about it in literature somewhere?

    I vaguely recall a book by a nurse I read recently (that I believe was written in the '70's) where I think this very situation arose. Maybe it was the book by Carol Gino I'm thinking of (anyone read that one)?
  12. by   RN Rotten Nurse
    reminds me of THE WORLD ACCORDING TO GARP. Garp was conceived by his mom (the nurse) jumping on an unconscious patient with priapism. hahahahhahahahah!
  13. by   donmurray
    Sex is a basic physiological need as described in Maslow's Hierarchy. David's is a valid question. He perhaps set it up a little provocatively in order to make people think, but he seems to have evoked prudishness instead. Air, Water, and Food are also basic needs, but no-one would think of denying a patient access to those, so what is so different about this one, that we deny it to patients who are otherwise unable to meet their needs independently? :stone
  14. by   FutureNurse2005
    hmmm...I'd have to say that sexual gratification is something that we can live without. Sure, we enjoy the feelings that are created, but I wont equate sexual gratification to needing food/water. I for one would be very weary of taking care of a patient in such a way. How would the family feel? Wouldnt you need to ask them about it? What if someone else saw this happening and you were accused of abuse/assault?

    I'm interested in reading more responses to this.

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