Question about rectal exam

  1. I am 18 and recently had my first pelvic exam and the doc (male) said (before the exam started) part of the exam was a rectal exam I asked if we could skip that part and he said it was important to check that everything devoloped normally so I agreed and got the exam I have read on the net and it says you don't need a rectal until 40 years old so was he feeding me a line of crap and also how many of you have recieved rectal exams

    rachel
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  2. 61 Comments

  3. by   Katnip
    I've always had a digital rectal exam with a gyn check up. I don't know any of my friends who have not had it done.

    On the website did it say that's what they were talking about or was it another, more comprehensive rectal exam they were talking about?
  4. by   rachel18us
    Quote from cyberkat
    I've always had a digital rectal exam with a gyn check up. I don't know any of my friends who have not had it done.

    On the website did it say that's what they were talking about or was it another, more comprehensive rectal exam they were talking about?
    Here is some of many links I have found stating that a rectal exam is not required under 40
    http://www.umt.edu/wellness/female%20health%20exams.htm
    http://www.principalhealthnews.com/topic/dredigestive
    http://www.vpul.upenn.edu/shs/whservices.html
  5. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I feel it's incomplete w/o that part. I Hate it but I feel an exam is incomplete w/o it. I rather have it than risk missing something,even IF they say it may not be "required" under 40. Not taking chances here.
  6. by   suzanne4
    Same way that they say that mammograms aren't needed until 40. How many patients do you know that have had breat cancer in their 20's and with no relatives that had it. The doctor was being responsible to you as a patient, though you may not believe it at this point. And especially if it was your first pelvic, you can tell quite a bit by the rectal exam.
    Even from an ER standpoint, if the patient comes in with any type of GYN complaint, she will get a pelvic as well as a rectal exam. They go together hand in hand for a complete assessment.
  7. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Suzanne in my book , all it takes is knowing ONE. My cousin is a relative that had breast CA in her 20s with nary a family history (NOT ONE PERSON) for GENERATIONS that anyone could remember. It was found on a thoroughly-completed postpartum exam after delivery of twins at age 26.She had NONE of the known risk factors. Yet she had to undergo radical mastectomy when her kids were all under age 3. (she had a 2 year old at home too).

    NO CHANCES HERE nope. It's up to YOU if you want to take them. She is a survivor thanks to what was probably an unnecessary exam.
  8. by   rachel18us
    Quote from suzanne4
    Same way that they say that mammograms aren't needed until 40. How many patients do you know that have had breat cancer in their 20's and with no relatives that had it. The doctor was being responsible to you as a patient, though you may not believe it at this point. And especially if it was your first pelvic, you can tell quite a bit by the rectal exam.
    Even from an ER standpoint, if the patient comes in with any type of GYN complaint, she will get a pelvic as well as a rectal exam. They go together hand in hand for a complete assessment.
    If a rectal exam is so important why don't all docs give them I have a 29 year old aunt who has had at least 6 exams by 6 different docs and when I mentioned this to her she said she never even heard of females getting rectals

    And I am not bitter about the exam it was just really embarassing
  9. by   Heidi2002
    I have always had a rectal exam during a gyn assessment and feel it is just "part" of the exam. This physician was probably just being very thorough.
  10. by   caroladybelle
    I have always had a rectal done with the pelvic exam.

    Doesn't it have some thing to do with checking to see if certain structures are protruding or not?
  11. by   jaimealmostRN
    The doctor (or CNM) is doing a rectal to check the back of your uterus. Think about it: with a vaginal exam the doc can only assess your cervix, with abdominal palpitation s/he can only feel if there are abnormalities on the front/top of your uterus. What if there is something on the back of your uterus (eg. abnormal growth, etc)? Primary pervention is the BEST measure to help prevent/treat early disease. Also some docs may not do this on those under 40 for the very reason you wrote about: awkwardness. If a gyno did not do this I may question if they are up to date in their education.
  12. by   SmilingBluEyes
    it would have been nice IF the dr explained this first. It sounds like you were taken quite by surprise, and if that is true, that is WRONG! I have never felt "embarassment" at such exams, knowing the rationale. It's part of good self-care and something to overcome for your own good.
  13. by   soltera
    omg!!!!!!!!! i had only one rectal exam in my life and it was horrible!! it was sooooooooooo painful. when she put her smallest finger up my *** i screamed so loud they heard me in the waiting area. i'm not kidding. never, never again. ever, ever, please God never never........................ :uhoh21:
  14. by   LeesieBug
    Yow! I have been missing out! I have never had a rectal exam with a pelvic. Hmmm...is it a regional thing? :chuckle I am going to have to start polling my family!

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