I've been working at a private pediatric office for a couple months or so after I got my nursing degree. During spring/summer times, there are a lot of teens coming in for sports physical or just a general physical.
The practice consists of all women. I work with a nurse practitioner, and most of the time, the NP does the sports physical. What I didn't understand was, that when a female comes in for a physical exam, she just tells her to remove her shoes and socks, but when a male comes in, she tells him to undress down to underpants.
Of course, for a male, the examination includes a hernia exam, so she asks the patient to remove his underpants towards the end. She also does a brief visual check of the anus. She also examines the testicles and retracts the foreskin if the patient is uncircumcised.
For a female, she keeps them covered except for the parts that are being examined, but she does not perform a breast exam or a genital exam.
I just couldn't understand why she differentiates how much a patient disrobes, and what parts of the body is examined based on their gender. Adolescent females are not immune to growth abnormalities either.
I would provide both patients, regardless of gender, a gown, and not omit any part of an exam, just because of gender, but apparently, the NP that I work with has a different view on things. She is in her 50s, so maybe she has an old way of thinking.
Is this practice standard?