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Old 08-07-2003, 11:21 PM
DSeid DSeid is online now
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Location: Chicago, IL
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should your doctor wear gloves for male genitalia exams?

A little disagreement on a medical discussion board. Some thoughts strongly held. Not rectal, just check for hernias and such. Do patients think/expect the doc to glove up? why or why not?
Old 08-07-2003, 11:38 PM
Troy McClure SF Troy McClure SF is offline
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I would expect anyone touching me in a clinical setting would be wearing gloves.
Troy McClure SF; Proud 99'er!
Old 08-08-2003, 01:42 AM
Alereon Alereon is offline
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I'd expect a doctor to glove up if s/he was going to be handling my junk. That said, I'm really not worried at all about catching anything from the doc, but I would think that s/he would be worried about juggling random strangers' plums without protection.
Old 08-08-2003, 02:08 AM
Marley23 Marley23 is offline
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I'd say yes. I mean, I wash my genitals thoroughly, but who knows where the freaking doctor has been!
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Old 08-08-2003, 02:24 AM
Muad'Dib Muad'Dib is offline
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Why on Earth is there any debate about this?
Old 08-08-2003, 02:44 AM
Johnny Bravo Johnny Bravo is online now
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Originally posted by Muad'Dib
Why on Earth is there any debate about this?
I had a long, furious, and (I'd like to think) somewhat humorous tirade all written up, but I think Muad'Dib sums it up rather nicely.

Why would you not want to be wearing gloves?
Old 08-08-2003, 02:53 AM
Mudshark Mudshark is offline
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I would think that the doctor would be more concerned about touching the genitals of some people wothout gloves.
Old 08-08-2003, 08:42 AM
DSeid DSeid is online now
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What exactly should I be concerned about? Weaving gloves, putting on, taking off, is a hassle. The exam is very brief. There is no infectious disease risk in either direction from examining a guys nads, even if his hygiene is poor. The only reason to do it is if not doing it somehow offends a typical patient's sensibilities. That's what I'm trying to gauge now.

I'm a pediatrician. Those who want gloved exams: at what age should it start? should I glove for toddlers? the fifth grade exam? High Schoolers and above?
Old 08-08-2003, 09:04 AM
Cheesesteak Cheesesteak is offline
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Location: Lovely Montclair, NJ
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I was taught to wash my hands after going to the bathroom, there are all sorts of bugs potentially down there. My nads ARE only a couple of inches from my poop chute, ya know. And they're trapped all day with the PC inside my undies. Unless the doc is going to immediately wash his hands, everything he touches, his pen, paper, tongue depressors, etc. can get something on it.

Take the extra 10 seconds and put on a glove.
Old 08-08-2003, 09:06 AM
ReBusEniGma ReBusEniGma is offline
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Absolutely. Mine does, every time. And for no other reason besides courtesy. I would definitely expect any doctor to be gloved when performing any type of genitalia inspection. In my mind:
A) It is far less 'personal' to the extent that there is a barrier between your skin and the doctor's.
B) I think it is professional and respectful
C) It removes any shadow of doubt that someone else's unwanted body oils, germs etc. are not left on your skin.

Some people have latex allergies, in which they may choose to make allowances to the above, or, the physician my use an alternative glove such as Styrene butadiene, Polychloroprene etc.
Old 08-08-2003, 09:16 AM
Cheesesteak Cheesesteak is offline
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A-ha! I knew Cecil had something to say about the relative cleanliness of the genital region.
Old 08-08-2003, 09:55 AM
DSeid DSeid is online now
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Well no duh that it is understood that hands are immediately washed after. Before pen handled. Hands washed before every PE. PE ends with genitalia exam and hands washed immediately after that. Gloves are medically indicated if it is reasonably expected to have contact with blood or certain body fluids such as semen or vaginal secretions, etc. I do not expect such during this exam! I do not glove to examine a baby's diaper area (and know no one who does) and even change a poopy if it happens to be there during the exam. It isn't "clean" but nothing that immediate handwashing doesn't suffice for.

I am educated here however. I was on the side that patients aren't particularly schizoid about this. There is no medical reason to glove, but if there really is a coutesy one, if pateints expect it, then I have to seriously consider a change in practice. (For us Peds doing young adult/teen-ager exams it is more than 10 seconds. Gloves can't be left in the rooms; they would be played with and are a suffocation risk if parly blown up and inhaled. We'd need to leave the room to get the gloves and return, or carry a stock in our already overstuffed pockets.) So at what age to start folks?


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