Patient modesty concerns pertaining to surgery - page 18
Want to get feedback about how we all handle pt concerns about modesty and/or being naked as part of surgery. Concerns about who sees them and for how long? Why do they need to be naked? When is the... Read More
Jun 28, '10Quote from orsonicAs this thread is pertaining specifically to patient modesty I, also, suspect a warning is coming.The "double standard" is very common in american medicine and alive and well in the ultimate form, male genital mutilation on helpless babies who never give consent, commonly called circumcision because it sounds a lot less barbaric. Of course we all instantly realize how horrible it is it it is done to baby girls. I imagine this comment will be quickly removed with the excuse that it doesnt fit with the thread (but it does). It is just too horrible to face the fact that millions of men have had their genitals forcably mutilated by the medical profesion. They would not ever submit to it as an adult so it is forced on them as a baby and the doctors pretend that it was "informed" consent from their parent. Of couse the doctor wouldn't cut of any other healthy body parts of the inocent baby with the parents consent, just the most pleasurable part on a male baby, the frenulum of his penis. too bad he wasn't born a girl!
However, this sort of post clearly shows that it is futile to discuss something like patient modesty without tackling the obvious double standard. And it is futile to discuss something like the double standard without addressing its scope.
Male genital mutilation is absolutely horrible. It is just one more example of a double standard on which males find themselves at the losing end. It is not so much a modesty double standard as it is a mutilation double standard. There is no valid medical reason to routinely remove boys' penise skin. It is not anyting but painful and unnecessary. It is even risky to some extent. Conducting male genital mutiliation files directly in the face of the medical mantra "do no harm."
Like much of what we, as a society, often do is to try to rationalize the irrational. We couch the mutilation under justifications like it is more hygenic, aesthic, normal and ... well... just because.
By the way, most males walking the planet have their foreskin.
Is "because it looks nicer to my girlfriend/wife" really a good enough reason?
I was in college years ago when I first recall hearing about and discussing female genital mutilation. I was appalled to learn of it, and immediately recognized it as nothing short of barbarism. I recall discussing this with a female friend (a self proclaimed feminist) and we were outraged as we unraveled more and more of the truth behind this third world practice. At the lunch table, another friend interupted the conversation and she asked me directly: Are you circumsized? I paused. Silence. After a little embarrasment at fielding such a question, I answered "yes." She then said "why?" I didn't know how to respond because I instinctively knew that the only answers for that question that I have to draw on are "because my parents had me circumsized." The insightful question sort of took all the wind out of our sails... as I recall now, I think we just switched topics.
A discussion on track within this thread may have no room to accommodate a discussion on male genital mutilation per se, unless done so within the context of ensuring the male infant's mutiliated genitals are quickly covered afterward to minimize his exposure discomfort and embarrassment -- his modesty consideration.
However, within a more free flowing discussion on a topic given wide birth, the latitude to fully explore the scope and magnitude of double standards is legitimate. In such an environment, we are pemitted to go beyond covering the mutilated genitals and asking a much more important question... why is it even done? It isn't done to little girls except in a few remaining ostracized pockets of the third world.
Double standards negatively impact females and males. They transcend society and bleed across all settings, including the medical setting. Why isn't the medical community -- the doctors, nurses, advocates and patients -- outraged over male genital mutilation?