Husbands or S/O's at routine exam - page 2

Wondering what your experiences or facilities policies are about husbands or significant others attending their partners routine gyn exams? I know it is fairly common for the husband to attend some... Read More

  1. by   santhony44
    Quote from stevielynn
    No policy - it is the patient's call.

    I did take my dd to one of my ob appts when she was 12 - it was a good opportunity to talk about those kinds of exams and also HOW THE HECK HER PARENTS WERE EXPECTING A CHILD WHEN SHE WAS 12 YEARS OLD!

    steph

    I don't see any problem with a 12 year old daughter. I did, however, just this week have to draw the line at a 4 year old male child!
  2. by   CEG
    Quote from santhony44
    I don't see any problem with a 12 year old daughter. I did, however, just this week have to draw the line at a 4 year old male child!
    I wouldn't have a problem with this- we are pretty open with our bodies in my family I guess. I wouldn't want my 4 yo to see another woman's naked body, nor would I take him if he was uncomfortable seeing mine. If he was comfortable and mom was comfortable, it really wouldn't be the nurse's place to judge. After all, most kids this age go into bathrooms/ changing rooms with their opposite sex parent all the time.
  3. by   Spidey's mom
    Quote from santhony44
    I don't see any problem with a 12 year old daughter. I did, however, just this week have to draw the line at a 4 year old male child!
    I guess I shouldn't tell you then that I did have to take my 4 year old last year because I had no one to leave him with on the day of my appt. He sat at the other end of the room however and was coloring.

    steph
  4. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Never was an issue w/my doctors and is not with the ones with whom I work,either.
  5. by   walker shaw
    Quote from KellNY
    I'd have a MAJOR problem with any ob/gyn's office (medical assistant, nursing staff, MD/CNM/NP, or just a general office policy) that would not allow my SO to be with despite my wishes.

    I just wanted him there.

    People tend to forget that this is MY BODY. I know it better than anyone else. If I know that having the person I am closest to next to me while someone is jamming a cold metal duck beak into my most private area will make me feel more calm, more relaxed, and thus make the exam more physically and mentally bearable, then I am entitled to that.

    Maybe the couple is really that close, and share things like that. Maybe she doesn't care one way or the other, but the SO is very interested to learn about his partner's body.

    Whatever the reason is--it should be left up to the woman to decide.

    I would not go to a provider that did not respect me in such a simple manor. It's very simple.
    Thanks for the reply, I think you hit hit the point exactly, especially as quoted above. It never has been a problem yet, but there are always a few butterflies as that time rolls around each year, as to what, if anything the doctor or nurse might say when more than just the patient attempts to go into the exam room. It's nice to hear that it probably isn't a big deal, and that it might be more common than we think.
  6. by   walker shaw
    Made an appointment for next month. Dear hubby will accompany me and intends on being present during the exam. He usually has butterflies until then, not knowing whether policies are the same and he can attend, or whether the doctor or nurse might question his presence this year. Till then, cross your fingers!
  7. by   Lovely_RN
    I think the patient should ultimately decide if they want another person in the exam room but I think they should be asked during a private consultation with the provider before the exam takes placed.

    When I had my first child the Ob/gyn insisted that we speak first alone. He asked me if I wanted my then partner in the room during the exam. He asked me all the questions about domestic violence etc at that point. At least if something was going on I had a chance to tell him in private without having to give an answer in front of my partner.

    When I had my second child my CNM asked me in front of my husband if I wanted him in the room. Once we were in the exam room she did the interview about domestic violence in front of him. I hardly think a woman who is being abused is going to answer those questions honestly with her abuser present. That also applies in the case of a parent bringing in their child. Will the child really answer questions about being sexually active with the parent standing right there? I think it's unlikely. I have no problem with having anyone you want in the room while you are being examined but I think the provider should be responsible enough to find out if that is really what the patient wants.
  8. by   walker shaw
    I agree with Falon that the patient should make the decision whether to have someone in the exam room with her during the exam.

    When I first asked the question, I was asking the question from the standpoint of a normal, non-abusive husband / wife or significant other relationship perspective. But, I suppose in today's society, this might be assuming too much?? Also, when I first asked the question, I was presenting the question from the standpoint of an established relationship between the ob/gyn and the patient, for instance, ob/gyn had delivered patient's babies and patient had been a patient for a few years (ie: not a first time the patient saw this ob/gyn).

    I find a hard time believing that given the relationship between patient / observer and patient /ob/gyn that I describe above (normal, established), that the patient needs to be first asked in private whether they want someone in the room during the exam. It seems to me that if the patient didn't want their husband or significant other in the exam room, that they would make it fairly clear that that person should/could wait in the waiting room.
  9. by   elizabeth321
    Quote from walker shaw
    I agree with Falon that the patient should make the decision whether to have someone in the exam room with her during the exam.

    When I first asked the question, I was asking the question from the standpoint of a normal, non-abusive husband / wife or significant other relationship perspective. But, I suppose in today's society, this might be assuming too much?? Also, when I first asked the question, I was presenting the question from the standpoint of an established relationship between the ob/gyn and the patient, for instance, ob/gyn had delivered patient's babies and patient had been a patient for a few years (ie: not a first time the patient saw this ob/gyn).

    I find a hard time believing that given the relationship between patient / observer and patient /ob/gyn that I describe above (normal, established), that the patient needs to be first asked in private whether they want someone in the room during the exam. It seems to me that if the patient didn't want their husband or significant other in the exam room, that they would make it fairly clear that that person should/could wait in the waiting room.
    How utterly niave....

    That being said for the most part most exams and paps are relatively straight forward without all the drama....if someone is comforted having their husband at the top of the bed with them during a routine pap then it wouldn't be a huge problem....often in er we don't have time to do all the psycho social interviewing prior to an exam with whoever happens to be in the room...we want to do the pap and have an opportunity to do a quick interview of the patient. If a patient asked for someone to stay with them it would likely be considered but we try to keep it matter of fact. "give us a couple minutes here and we will come get you type of thing" and it is usually fine and it doesn't put people on the spot.

    Not everything is done to create a fight or an issue....which so many love to create

    Liz
    Last edit by elizabeth321 on Jan 30, '07
  10. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I always ask the patient if she is comfortable being examined and having her health history taken with whomever is present in the room.

    I also point to and have the patient read the part about whether she is a victim of abuse in the home or not, and have her write yes or no. This makes most people more comfortable.
  11. by   walker shaw
    Quote from elizabeth321
    How utterly niave....


    Liz
    We will have to agree to DISAGREE on that one.

    My original post referred to "routine exams," and I was trying to clarify "routine" further since some answers, yours included, referred to exams done in the ER or rape or abuse type exams. I was not asking about rape or abuse related exams, as I do understand the exam circumstances there are likely different.

    I was trying to clarify that the original question was meant to reflect not an ER visit, but a regular, annual visit to an ob/gyn for a routine yearly exam, which would include a breast exam, a pap smear, a pelvic exam, and a mammogram (depending on age). I was further attempting to clarify that I was wondering the policy of ob/gyn's for established patient/ob/gyn relationships, not a first time patient of the ob/gyn.

    I find it rather absurd to think that a busy ob/gyn is going to ask the patient, prior to doing the exam, if the patient wants their partner in the exam room during the exam. Most ob/gyn's that I'm familiar with are far to busy to delay an exam while the patient runs out to the waiting room to get their partner so the exam can begin; rather, most ob/gyn's I've seen will assume that if there isn't a partner in the room with the patient initially, that the patient doesn't want anyone in the room.

    I asked the initial question based on the above, and based on what I've found most ob/gyn's practice to be.
  12. by   walker shaw
    Quote from SmilingBluEyes
    I always ask the patient if she is comfortable being examined and having her health history taken with whomever is present in the room.

    I also point to and have the patient read the part about whether she is a victim of abuse in the home or not, and have her write yes or no. This makes most people more comfortable.
    I can understand asking the patient whether they are comfortable as you suggest - this makes sense, and gives the patient to voice their opinion if they are not comfortable with having their partner present during the exam.

    Also, the 2nd point about indicating in writing yes or no to abuse is well thought.
  13. by   imenid37
    Ditto to all who say it is the patient's call. If you need to do a domestic violence screening, then tell the woman/partner, I need to take a few minutes to get her all set up, etc., and I will get you in to be w/ her during the exam. I think that most people are ok w/ her answering a few questions alone, etc. first and then being there for the exam if she wants him/her there for support or whatever reason. If partner doesn't want patient alone at all w/ the staff, then it raises some red flags. Many gyn's do domestic violence screening at routine annual exams. In most cases I can think of, the patient is the boss and we are there for her, even if it is inconvenient to us. Personally, I want my husband as far away as possible. He is forever, joking and carrying on in embarassing situations or doctor visits, etc.
    Last edit by imenid37 on Jan 30, '07

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