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Family and PT reactions to male nurses

Men   (5,044 Views | 12 Replies)
by Warrior504th Warrior504th (New) New

1,070 Profile Views; 11 Posts

With some medical professions and even nursing specialties where privacy is of greater concern, or perhaps through the eyes of family who do not experience the care given firsthand, do you find that male nurses are disliked or a major discomfort to many? I imagine in less health critical circumstances that this would be towards the forefront of some family members minds and wanted to know what you've seen/heard/experienced on the topic.

This is of more concern to myself as a future RN with a particularly masculine build... Though it comes naturally to offer a gentle touch and warm smile whenever appropriate!

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MissSpectacular specializes in Geriatrics, Adult Psych, Peds HH.

36 Posts; 1,606 Profile Views

I personally find that older people are more....not exactly "uncomfortable" but confused by male nurses. In their time frame, nurses were predominately female, while most doctors were predominately male. These same people also are equally put off by female doctors.

I find in some facilities that they actually prefer to hire male nurses...they can lift more, and in my opinion, get more respect. Many a time I've had a downright horrid family member screaming at me, and immediately silence the minute a male, and much larger, nurse enters the room.

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NightOwl0624 has 6 years experience.

536 Posts; 9,819 Profile Views

I personally find that older people are more....not exactly "uncomfortable" but confused by male nurses. In their time frame, nurses were predominately female, while most doctors were predominately male. These same people also are equally put off by female doctors.

I find in some facilities that they actually prefer to hire male nurses...they can lift more, and in my opinion, get more respect. Many a time I've had a downright horrid family member screaming at me, and immediately silence the minute a male, and much larger, nurse enters the room.

Agree - totally - with MissSpectacular. It's usually just the elderly that object, and only when doing personal kind of care. We have 3 new male nurses on our med floor and I love working with them - and I believe most of the patients love them too.

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169 Posts; 4,610 Profile Views

I was a patient of a male nurse when I was coming out of surgery when I was 17. I was waking up from the anestisia and this hottie male nurse was trying to wake me up by saying my name. In my drug-induced haze, I thought I'd really died and gone to heaven! lol Ok in all seriousness, I do think that male nurses get more respect in the hospital setting but in every day life, I have seen that when a male nurse is asked what they do are given a double take when they answer "nurse". Not fair but most people have this image in their head of what a nurse should look like and when that doesn't fit, it can lead to a bit of an uncomfortable moment.

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Argo has 10 years experience and specializes in Peri-Op.

1,221 Posts; 15,264 Profile Views

I'm a large "manly built" Guy and have had no issues. I have another nurse That works for me that's a body builder an rather large. He has no issues. Mostly the women are happy to have such a "handsome " crew. Our Anesthesia team is also comprised of younger in shape guys too. Very very rarely has someone expressed any weird feelings of having surgery with male nurses. All the women employees that have had surgery for any cases, even gyn, have always requested me for their nurse.

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Chaya has 15 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in Rehab, Med Surg, Home Care.

932 Posts; 11,137 Profile Views

In my experience it goes both ways. I've had LOL's that didn't want a male doing anything of a personal nature with them. I also recently had a gentleman who was s/p prostate surgery who wasn't going to let a woman assess his surgical site-thank goodness one of the guy RN's was working that shift!

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Elvish is a BSN, DNP, RN, NP and specializes in Community, OB, Nursery.

3 Followers; 17 Articles; 5,259 Posts; 68,190 Profile Views

I work OB/Gyn and there are no male RNs on that floor (though I'd welcome men to my unit). My first job was on a medsurg floor with several male RNs and I never had to switch with any of them for a pt. care-related issue (female not wanting males for certain types of care, etc).

I've been with my mom for several surgeries wherein a nurse taking care of her either pre- or postop was male and thought they were great. Never had an issue, and honestly, the fact that it was a 'male nurse' didn't really register. As long as there is a competent licensed individual taking care of my mom I don't really care what their chromosomal makeup is - and neither does she!

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danh3190 has 4 years experience and specializes in Med-Surg, Cardiac.

510 Posts; 7,521 Profile Views

I agree that some patients are surprised that I'm a nurse but they don't seem upset.

I had a lot of trouble convincing one older guy that I'm a nurse not a doctor. When I finally got it into his head that I'm a nurse I noticed that he started using female pronouns (she, her) when he talked to his family about me.

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100 Posts; 4,558 Profile Views

With you being used to hitting the ground faster and harder (you heavy drop Devil), I am sure you will bring the utmost in professionalism to your career.

And that is what will count with the majority of your patients.

Strike Hold!

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145 Posts; 4,811 Profile Views

I have never really had an issue where my gender has created an issue. When it comes to personal care issues with female patients (and male patients as well for that matter) I let them perform them on their own if they are able. If I have an older woman who requires assistance, I always ask if they would prefer a female PCA or nurse help them with personal care if help is required. I always tell them I can't guarantee it, but I would be happy to see if a female is available. Probably only about 1 out of 9 or 10 women take me up on the offer.

Funny story related to this thread: I was preparing an elderly female patient for discharge for the cardiac unit and went in to take off her telemetry leads. I took care to cover her with a blanket to protect her dignity and she looked at me, laughed and said "Oh for goodness sakes, honey, dispense with all the shenanigans and just take the damned things off. If you get excited over these breasts, there's something wrong with you."

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CT Pixie has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN.

3,723 Posts; 36,202 Profile Views

Funny story related to this thread: I was preparing an elderly female patient for discharge for the cardiac unit and went in to take off her telemetry leads. I took care to cover her with a blanket to protect her dignity and she looked at me, laughed and said "Oh for goodness sakes, honey, dispense with all the shenanigans and just take the damned things off. If you get excited over these breasts, there's something wrong with you."

I think you met my grandmother ;)

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4,700 Posts; 38,390 Profile Views

Never been an issue for me. I work at a VA hospital and 85% of our patients are male. Generally when I have had female patients it has not presented an issue.

Uniformly I receive positive feedback from my patients and their loved ones.

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