Modesty Issues - page 3

Looking for words of wisdom from those who are more experienced with prepping a pt for surgery or catheterizing adult male pts with modesty issues. It has only happened a few times in the past year... Read More

  1. by   CaDad
    I am sorry Squirrel you even had to have surgery and I personally am outraged you were not given a choice for a female nurse-If I had been your husband rest assured that would not have happened.
    I do understand that the first priority is ones health.I would have thought that with all the advances in medical technology and medical knowledge we still are in the dark ages on the mental, emotional well being of the PT. I don't understand "Try to recognize modesty". You either understand or you don't,I do understand that in ER things are what they are-saving people. But I have been in ER with friends and family and have been shocked at the cavalier treatment of men. Women are afforded every opportunity that is reasonable in those situations, but not the men. Seriously, what is up with that? They don't pull the curtains, they strip off or cut off their cloths with no regard to anyone else in the ER including people who are not nurses or Doctors. I mean tons of other people who should not be there! It is truly shocking! I know things are a tad hectic and your trying to save lives but it is really really weird how different women are cared for than men.
    I don't get what you mean that in your experience that many men are not that modest. I can assure you that is not the case. I have talked to all of my male friends and associates and all of us hate going to Doctors and Hospitals because of the callused disregard for our modesty and privacy! If you have males in your life and wonder why we won't go get that check up or go to the doctor for those aches and pains, it is because of how we are treated. I actually have to lock the door in my Doctors patient room yea there are locks on his, because the nurses, other female Doctors and even the office personnel feel they can just walk in on whatever is going on. They pound on the door requesting admittance and I let them know, Hey!!! This is the patient talking-go away until were done!!! My doctor thought it was funny at first, now he is starting to understand and I have heard him telling the staff not to enter the rooms when he is with the patients. We are more modest that you realize-its just not a manly thing to talk about and women , just like you, just assume we are not predisposed to having modesty issues. Your dead wrong on that account.
    Your may find it interesting to read a " Bioethics BLog by a Doctor Maurice from Los Angeles California on PT modesty-you may find it interesting. I will post it if you wish to look at it.
    In closing , I have the highest regard for Nurses. Most don't understand the egregious work load, the stress you have, the unfathomable responsibility you shoulder, the long hours you work and the emotional drain you have daily and I understand that this issue may seem trivial to you-but in fact it is a big big deal for us men. I wish I could come up with something to compare this to-i am working on it lol.
    Last edit by CaDad on Dec 10, '09
  2. by   paigec
    Our patients are always put to sleep before putting Foleys in.
  3. by   CaDad
    Just a comment ladies:
    I realize that your all saying its clinical and all, but for the PT is is extremely embarrassing and all your explanations do not reflect the extreme discomfort , physically and emotionally, having someone you don't know see you when your the most vulnerable. I could care less if your offended that I may request a male nurse, or a lady requests a female nurse, it's already a nightmare being there without having to be put on public display " Just because you have seen it all" does not make us feel any better about it.It is just a simple request! Taking some extra time to make a PT comfortable is after all the civilized thing to do.
    For the PT, many times it will be the first and last time they are in this situation and the lasting impressions one has can be traumatic, enough so that any further vistits to a Doctor can be curtailed or ignored. Emotional trauma is just as real as physical trauma. I know ther are several nurses that will say , well its the PT's choice if they want to leave or not, take it or leave i t, if that is the case you just may be in the wrong profession, after all, you are the PT's advocate after all, no matter what your personal feeling on the subject are.
  4. by   Argo
    I'm a man and would prefer a decent looking under 30 y/o woman handing my unit. Just saying...... might as well have fun with the event...



    Actually I don't care, I have put in hundreds if not thousands of Foley's and done awake possitioning/prep on women with just spinals.... no big deal, just drape it off and explain to them everything I'm doing before and during.....
  5. by   GadgetRN71
    Also, so many of my patients are trauma patients..so the last thing on their mind is modesty, poor things. The weather has gotten really nice the past few days, soon we'll start with the motorcycle accidents, MVAs etc.
    Last edit by GadgetRN71 on Mar 19, '10
  6. by   Cul2
    I think you need to be very careful about what
    you assume is on a patient's mind. The fact that
    very few posters here mention as a standard
    that you should ask the patient about their gender
    choice in situations like this, is significant. I'm sure
    that patients are asked more often
    than is mentioned. But this is one of this "secret"
    topics in medicine. The fact that not enough male
    nurses are generally available to offer this
    accommodation to men, has so many implications
    that are disturbing within the profession -- political,
    economic, social. This "gender neutral" -- "no big
    deal" attitude may make this job easier for the nurse,
    but it's not a patient-centered point of view, hardly
    empathetic. Step outside your point of view for a
    moment and consider basic human courtesy and
    dignity. Don't assume you know what the patient is
    thinking and feeling. Ask.
  7. by   Butterfliesnroses
    To the OP: just remain professional. Talk to the pt. throughout the procedure. Keep the pt. at covered as possible. And if the pt. asks for a nurse of the other gender do what you can to fulfill that request.

    "The fact that
    very few posters here mention as a standard
    that you should ask the patient about their gender
    choice in situations like this, is significant."

    I often don't ask my pt.'s if they'd prefer a male or female. To me that's making it seem like a female inserting a cahether is something to be ashamed of and it's not. If the pt. is truly uncomfortable then they should ask and it should be put in their medical records what gender they prefer.

    I've had invasive things done by the opposite sex. Heck when I was in labor my daughters HR dropped VERY low and so I had to male dr.'s hands up my vagina trying to feel for a cord around the baby's neck. I was very reserved and didn't like males doing private procedures on me until I was pregnant for awhile. Then I just got used to intimate procedures being done.
  8. by   GadgetRN71
    Quote from Cul2
    I think you need to be very careful about what
    you assume is on a patient's mind. The fact that
    very few posters here mention as a standard
    that you should ask the patient about their gender
    choice in situations like this, is significant. I'm sure
    that patients are asked more often
    than is mentioned. But this is one of this "secret"
    topics in medicine. The fact that not enough male
    nurses are generally available to offer this
    accommodation to men, has so many implications
    that are disturbing within the profession -- political,
    economic, social. This "gender neutral" -- "no big
    deal" attitude may make this job easier for the nurse,
    but it's not a patient-centered point of view, hardly
    empathetic. Step outside your point of view for a
    moment and consider basic human courtesy and
    dignity. Don't assume you know what the patient is
    thinking and feeling. Ask.
    This might fly ok on the floors, not so much in the OR. Sorry, but when someone has a gunshot wound and is crashing, the last thing out of my mouth is going to be question on what gender the pt prefers. I may be "assuming" here but I'm guessing you don't work in the OR. Are you even a nurse?

    The people I work with are top notch..I'm proud to call them my coworkers, and I resent the implication that we aren't respecting their dignity. We keep our patients covered as much as possible. Staffing wise, we work with what we have and that's how it's going to be. There are priorities in a crisis situation. You know, things like airway and making sure the patient doesn't bleed out.

    I'm sure I sound ****** and I am- I'm so tired of people who don't work in the field or in our specialty getting on their high horse from a position of ignorance.

    For the last time..you're assuming a lot yourself-you're assuming that anyone is all excited to see your naked body. Trust me... we're not.
  9. by   Cul2
    Some good points. Nothing to be ashamed of? Shame isn't an objective status. It's subjective. Granted, how you approach a patient is essential and can make a difference, but whether a patient feels shame, embarrassment, humiliation is within the patient. Whether there's anything to be ashamed about may be connected to
    the patient's culture, religion, sexual orientation, abuse history, etc.

    If a patient has these modesty issues they should speak up and it should be put in their record? Certainly, put it in the chart. But we all know many of not most patients are often too anxious, nervous, embarrassed, vulnerable, frightened, stressed to speak up. Sometimes they're so unfamiliar with hospitals that they don't really know what's coming. What's not often spoken is this: A significant number of patients may feel that if they complain they'll be labeled a "bad" patient and that will affect their care. Now, we know that's not true the vast majority of the time. But that's how they may feel, whether it's rational or not. Finally, it is interesting how, when this modesty issue comes up, we always end up in the ER, as if this issue is only or mostly about emergencies. It's not. It's mostly about average, everyday non life threatening kinds of exams and procedures. The ER's and emergencies are different animals and most reasonable people will acknowledge that. And you must realize that the issue isn't, from most patient's perspective, whether you get "excited" about their body. It's not about you personally. You must know enough about psychology to realize this issue is much more complex that that. And these ignorant people on their high horses are the people you're working on. Patients are not somehow "outside" this issue. They're not disconnected from the situation -- they're an essential part of the situation.
  10. by   ImaWonderer
    Just making a general comment on Patient Modesty. Let me first say that i DO NOT work in the medical field. Why is this such a hard issue for medical professionals to understand? I am a healthy person so I have what I consider limited exposure to hospitals/doctors/clinics but in the limited visits I have experienced staff walking into the room unannounced,not knocking on doors,being asked intimate questions while standing in the hallway with other patients,staff just walking by.I have been in stirrups(FACING THE DOOR) and had someone unnannouced open the door.
    I am personally sick of the "we see this all the time"attitude.

    What I also find disturbing is the level of gossip about patients.Now obviously if this is your patient you must communicate with others concerning care.But I simply mean GOSSIP. For all the mouth service given to patient privacy and confidentiality I find it interesting that medical professionals dont seem to think that patients dont want ANYONE and EVERYONE IN THE HOSPITAL with the skills to clip on a name tag to know their business if they are not involved in their care.

    In the medical field you have access to peoples personal, private information...who has cancer to who has been raped.
    You are in this enviornment everyday so I can see how it is easy to run on automatic pilot but thing is If it was your daughter in stirrups would you want an assistant,intern,nurse just opening the door thinking nothing of it......if it were your already humiliated son with a vibrator stuck up his behind would you want his Xrays being passed around to everyone from the doctor down to the janitor for the soul purpose "wanting to see".

    My guess is its not hard to understand basic modesty I just think when you work in the medical field the bottom line is that if its not YOUR BOTTOM on display it is easy to not care as much.
    Exposure is neccesary for some proceudures/exams to be done pure and simple. I'm saying have basic courteousy KNOCK before entering a room,pull curtains, don't ambush patients with an unwanted audience.Identify yourselves are you a nurse,CNA,medical assistant,chaperone etc......

    You are in this enviornment everyday THE PATIENT IS NOT.Things that you JUST DO is not the norm from the patients perspective. I have seen several statements about medical people saying ...we are not turned on or looking at you in a sexual way....I understand this ..it is part of your job....But what I am saying from a patient point of view you as the medical professional have your clothes ON the patient is laying down,genitals exposed surrounded by strangers,wearing a paper gown, has had a finger in the ass,****** in a cup, told strangers the most intimate part or their his/her lives PSYCHOLOGICALLY CAN'T YOU SEE THE DIFERENCE?

    When I was walked in on Im sure the people walking in the room didnt give it a second thought (unfortunately) but from my point of view I am in stirrips,facing the door and even seeing visitors in the hallway.......So the fact the "you see this all the time" is even more disturbing to me this means you have become so use immune to seeing patients in a vulnerable position you more than likely have a hand in "actively humiliating" them weather you know it or not.

    I am not so much talking about Life/death situations by all means if Im shot or in a traumatic car accident i'm not thinking about someone seeing my boob.I'm saying use common sense.....
    I have respect for what people in this industry do. What is lacking seems to be basic respect for the patients body and the fact we are human beings with thoughts and feelings.I realize this is a job to you ....mammagrams to colonospys are IMPORTANT just remember we are STILL HUMAN beings . Just because I walk into a hospital doesnt mean I want stories about my anus showing up on your facebook page(wow so much for "we're all professionals" line).

    When all those people waked in on me unnannouced it was beyond degrading and humilating. I could have gotton more privacy and had my dignity respected more if i were being examined in the middle of a shopping mall.

    I had a friend tell me about her son who was 11 at the time. He had an issue involving his penis and had to go to the doctor. The son (11) started to cry because he wanted his mom to leave the room for obvious reasons.She and the male doctor also started to laugh. The son was at this time still crying...The mother was saying how it was silly and she has seen him nude countless times and used to change his diapers. The mother even as she was telling me this story was still laughing. I told her can she not see how an 11 year old boy wouldnt want his mother to see him exposed? Im only sharing this story to show medical people the they "see this all the time" attitude means nothing.The 11 year old was clearly embarrassed to be exposed in front of his mom. The fact the she used to change his diapers means nothing to him.He is crying and embarrassed while they doctor and mom laugh. This seems like what to me is happeneing in the medical field. I'm sure the mom/doctor didnt care about seeing the childs privates but for the kid this was a REAL ISSUE that should not have just been dismissed as trivial.

    In closing like I stated earlier I do not work in the medical field and never will but those of who are medical professionals I PROMISE YOU you will at some point you will be a patient.The only advantage i can see is that you would have a better understanding of what to expect before it happens....an advantage that non-medical people dont have.

    I often hear of medical people needing emotional "distance" from patients. I think this is needed as i can imagine you see some horrible tragic things but their is something to be said for becoming SO DISTANT that you take part in again "actively humiliting" them SO DISTANT that their gentials being on display mean nothing SO DISTANT that 4,5,6, people can just walk into a room the size of a shoebox without the patient knowing exactly who they are and why they are here and just gawking without uttering a single word. Thats just truly frightening to see so many people who dont even see it an issue.
    My guess is they do when its them.......

    Thanks
  11. by   CaDad
    TO: ImaWonderer:
    Wow: You hit it dead on the head!!!!!!
    I also am tired of the nurses saying " They have seen it all" also!!!! Ir would be easier if they also were nude in the room with me while they were doing their job, I think I might just feel a little bit better-after all: I have see it all also!!!
    The story about the 11 yr old boy was infuriating also-how dare anyone assume something so stupid, so what if his mom changed his diaper?-Imagine if it were a young female and her Dad was standing there-what do you want to bet it would not be so amusing? The calloused disregard of the mother together with the Doctor was sickening ,can we say child abuse here? Because that is exactly what it is. I hope that ImaWondering cleared that up with the kid mother- I am constantly amazed at how calloused some have become toward common decency and respect.
    I have personally witnessed nurses walking into a room and just start undressing a male pt without even talking to them with the pt demanding what was gong on., nurses wheeling PT's down the hall nude after a shower, PT's laying exposed on gurney's in he hall with visitors everywhere. I even heard one little girl giggling at a nude young boy getting examined in the examining room with the curtains open. I have witnessed all of the situations that ImaWondering experienced and more, sadly to say. I think it is high time we address the issues brought up instead of defending the situation. We are not cars in a garage being worked on, just because you lost your modesty when you gave birth , or because you have gotten use to your job and all its nuances does not mean the PT feel the same way, in fact I can assure you it is exactly the opposite.
    It is appalling the total, disregard a lot of nurses have for the PTs they are called on the care for.
    I am sorry, I know nurses work very have extremely hard jobs and do not get the pay, regard, or respect for a lot of what they do-they are the unsung everyday hero's, no question about it-but hey, this kind of attitude really has got to stop-seriously.
  12. by   ImaWonderer
    It must have taken alot for this 11 year old to tell his mom about the problem that he was having "down there."
    its shocking to me that the mom and doctor would then further mortify this kid by laughing at the situation.

    How would the mom feel if she was having her breasts examined and have a doctor point and laugh at her? How would the doctor feel if he was having his prostate examined in front of an unwanted "audience" of people.My guess is that these issues wouldnt be so trivial anymore.My guess is "we see this all the time"line would quickly become meaningless as well.
    Its meaningless because they dont seem get that the guy turning his head and coughing isnt concerned at how IT MAKES THE MEDICAL STAFF FEEL.....Its meaningless because IT ISNT ABOUT YOU!!!!!!

    The mom says "Ive changed your diaper" "Ive seen you before" the same way medical professionals say "weve seen everything before" and boasts about privacy and confidentiality....Blah Blah Blah.....the second they are done they are gossiping about how hairy your butt is and tweeting about everything you did and said.......Truth is I dont have extreme modesty issues I'm not offened by the human body but I am shocked that a mom doesnt understand that an 11 year old boy feels totally different about his penis than he did when he was a 6 month old baby. I as a patient am not embarrassed by my body but why cant medical professionals understand this doesnt mean automatically mean I want to be spread eagle in front of a class of students. I find this common attitude pretty shocking considering they are so "educated"...(how about basic common sense)

    How would you like it if the person who works at the your bank and has access to your financial history posted about how you're behind on you mortgage payments the same way you post about patients? How would you like it if your kids teacher passed around you kids F paper FOR LAUGHS the same way you pass around some patients Xrays for laughs. If you were visiting a friend and using the bathroom in her house how would you like it if she just purposely walked in on you the same way you simply walk in on patients as they are being examined.My guess is that you would be FURIOUS even at the thought.....But many consistently use their professional position and treat patients this way daily.

    Knock before entering a room,pull curatins,introduce yourself to patients and your position, make sure they are comforatble with and intern watching....dont assume that just because he/she is comfortable with one intern observing doesnt mean they are comfortable with 5.Talk about what you are doing as you go along with the exam. Just because you as a doctor/nurse has done this 1000 times doesnt mean the specific patient has gone through it 1000 times.

    Gender does matter it is an issue to many......yes most nurses/CNA are female but the LEAST you can do is acknowledge that it is an issue to many. Dont take it as personal attack to you or your education. Your political correctness simply STOPS at my genitals.

    I was thinking about this kid and like i said it took a lot for him to come to his mother. My guess is with the way he was treated he would just as rather have the thing fall off before putting himself thru that again. The way he was treated was far worse than the original point for his visit. Same in my situation I was far more traumatized by the way I was treated by staff than I was concerned over the original reason for my visit.

    I was very much caught off guard and didnt know what to expect...now I do.
    I wasnt born a difficult patient....I was turned into one.and im sure its in my chart somewhere....and on facebook...lol
  13. by   CaDad
    Well I can certainly tell you were traumatized lol, I get that and I want you to know if I was your husband I would have done all I could to prevent your experience! I was shocked at what you wrote.
    Just to digress for a moment, it is simply outrageous how so many females have this opinion that males do not have modesty issues, or should not have modesty issues and that somehow, this is an immature thing to have. I have actually been told that BTW! I cannot explain where this comes from. I can assure you if you filed a complaint you would in all probability get a sympathetic ear. I think you should. Yours is one exception I am shocked at, the vast vast majority of the time female PT's are given their requests, we as men are simply told , there is nothing we can do, if you don't like it than go somewhere else, which by the way I have done on more than one occasion.
    Like yourself, I have a high regard for Nurses, they are worked like mules, and they certainly have my respect, they just don't seem to understand we want the respect back . I just hope our posts here at least educate them on how things are on the other side of the experience.

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