nurses and erections question

I have heard more than once that if a male patient gets an erection, the nurses are instructed to flick it.

This can’t be true. Can it?


I’d heard this anecdotally from a friend. He got a flick on the balls by a nurse (in the US) while getting a rectal exam. Not enough to inflict any pain, just enough to minimize embarrassment for all parties.

Oh, nevermind. I must have misread. You said “flick.”

(I have to stop watching those types of movies so much…)

How does being flicked on the balls minimize embarrassment for anybody (or did a whole lot of sarcasm just fly over my head)?

My mother, a nurse during the 1960s, said she and her coworkers used to carry a metal teaspoon around the wards with them in a pocket. A quick whack of the back of the spoon to the bell-end, and no more stiffy.

This is not currently taught in my school. In fact, when we were learning how to place Foley catheters, we specifically asked several teachers what to do “if”, and there was no answer other than, “wait”.

Anecdotes abound, however, of experienced nurses who know some magic “flick”, but none have been willing/able to teach us.

Wow, really? Whatever happened to “taking care of your patients”?


I’m fairly certain, through rigorous experimentation, that neither a spoon nor a flick would help me in this situation. I’m kind of surprised it has any effect on other people too, but I guess you really do learn something new every day.

I thought the OP was asking about this

I’ve got quite a few friends who are or have been nurses or doctors and I’ve heard them mention or discuss this a number of times - describing either a flick with a wooden tongue depressor, or a sharp tap with a spoon or a touch from the cold metal handle of a pair of scissors or forceps.

If it’s true, and if it works, I imagine it’s at least much a psychological effect as a physical one - for most men, being tapped sharply on the penis might be a bit like a signal that this is certainly not a sexual context.

But for some, it means the opposite.

Come on, man! Do some research for us, in the name of Doper Science! :smiley:

(I, sadly, am lacking in the proper equipment.)

Getting anywhere near that area with a scissors would certainly do the trick for me.

Amazing that it may even exist.

I would imagine the lawsuit if a male gynaecologist “flicked” the vulva of a woman who was getting wet.

Well, your coffee is just not going to taste the same afterwards.

Are you kidding me?!? Grow up.
When one is seriously ill, sex is not in the forefront of one’s mind. Just telling a man that he needs a catheter takes the “fun” out of any handling.
I was never taught any trick or technique to chase away an erection. I was taught to have a professional demeanor, that worked just fine.
And yes, I was a “hot” young nurse. :rolleyes:

picunurse, forget about sex for a minute. How about priaprism? A coma patient with an erection? An erection from stress, utterly unrelated to sexual thoughts (as I hear is a common young male worry during, say, algebra class)?

Frankly, none of us in clinicals were worried about sexy erections; we’re wondering if pathological or stress erections can be “deflated” quickly.

Pathological erections are by definition not real amenable to rapid detumescence by most interventions. Inserting 16 or 18 gauge needles and aspirating out the blood is certainly the quickest and most dramatic way to do so. Otherwise, cold compresses and pseudoephedrine may be helpful, but take time.

Inconvenient but non-pathological erections should be addressed by just leaving them alone.

“Flicking” or slapping it is just silly.

"Let me see if I understand the situation, nurse.

My father was admitted to the hospital for treatment of his decubitus ulcer. While you were giving him a sponge bath, you hit him on the genitals* - deliberately*, because he got an erection. He didn’t say anything to you, he didn’t harass you in any way - he just got an erection.

Did that seem like a good idea to you? Because if it did, let’s have a talk with your supervisor and see if she agrees.

If she does, perhaps the Licensing and Certification Division of the Department of Public Health would have an opinion on the matter."