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Found out I had pelvic exams done without my consent

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  • ICNDonna
    replied
    I will be closing this thread now for Lori's sake.

    Donna

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  • SharonA
    replied
    Lori...Glad everything went smoothly for you this morning.

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  • ICLori
    replied
    P.S. The hospital might be taking this very seriously I think. Maybe my fears aren't justified. I got a call today to meet with an investigator regarding this. So I'm going to. Hopefully everything will be okay. Mostly I just want things to change so that there are no more non-consensual pelvic exams done.

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  • ICLori
    replied
    Hi, everyone! Sorry about the confusion and editing. The thing is this - the hospital could easily find these posts and look through them. So I have to be careful to only say what I have in writing. There is more information that the doctor gave to my husband via telephone, and that my husband then relayed to me, but I can not legally say that information because it might open me to litigation and the only thing in my defense would be a he said/he said kind of thing. Doctor's word against my husband's. So I have to be very careful, you all understand. Anything I learned via the telephone, rather than in my surgical report, I think I probably should not write here.

    What I am upset about is lack of choice. Lack of the ability to give informed consent. If I am allowed to say "yes" to med students or doctors doing exams, I have no problem with it. I have never said "no." When I am not given the choice, and have to find out instead later what was done to me that I didn't expect, I get upset.

    I'm just very particular about the private parts of my body, and who sees them and who does what to them. I never want to be seen or touched down there without my express consent.

    Some doctors may very well include a pelvic with the cystoscopy. But I'll bet they told you about it ahead of time, right? And if you had med students observing/participating, I'll bet you were introduced to them first, too, right?

    I never saw the faces of the med students. I have their names and the fact that they are MS3's (3rd year students) but I never was introduced to them, never got the chance to say yes or no to their involvement. Did not sign a consent form that indicated they would be involved. It was a total surprise. I don't like surprises when it comes to the private parts of my body.

    Now, I'm an abuse survivor, so please keep that in mind. I may (almost surely) be more upset than other women who were never raped. So it might be hard for some of you, especially if you did not grow up being raped, to understand the depth of my feelings.

    Blessings,
    Lori
    P.S. I was fine for my appointment - everything went well, endocrinologist doc was really nice to me, no one assaulted me or anything or tried to trap me. I was so scared though - my blood pressure was 165/100 today! I gotta relax I think.

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  • ICKIRSTI
    replied
    re:

    My pleasure.. happy to help in anyway I can... Well I am very proud of you for standing up for your rights and the rights of others. Sure can get dangerous if people are experimenting on our bodies during procedures in which we are knocked out!! It's nice to know that you respect your rights and everyone else's enough to stand strong even in the face of criticism. I wish you all the best... and hope for you in the future.. much greater peace of mind in this area.... P.S. I had NO idea the med students would be in there! None whatsoever! But lucky for me my doc is a female, so I couldn't really question her intentions. I just figured she wouldn't do anything to violate my trust. Now if it were a male, and all those med students, I might have been like... what exactly is going on here? I don't know if I like this!! Maybe you shouldn't put me to sleep?! ...eh. .well. anyways.. ALL THE BEST TO YOU!! Keep us informed as to how everything goes.. just so long as you keep keeping it legal!! haha.... All the best! And then some!

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  • HGC
    replied
    If I am reading this correctly this is what Lori said in the original post which by the way she edited yesterday:
    In my case, only two medical students were in the OR observing/participating, but that's still two more than I ever consented to. And I never consented to, nor was told about, the pelvic exam(s).

    I guess we will have to wait until she responds to clear up any confusion.

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  • vm
    replied
    It doesn't say that now, though. I think that's where the confusion is coming from.

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  • HGC
    replied
    I think Moonhart is quoting what smcclafferty said about her Dr. doing the pelvic exam. According to ICLori's original post the pelvic exam was done by medical students without her permission.

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  • aprilmae
    replied
    Lori,

    I have followed this story just like I follow all of your other stories. First I must say that I admire you for your courage in posting so much of personal stories. You are in inspiration for those that don't always feel like sticking to their guns!

    You are absolutely very justified in your feelings - I would be livid. Also, I think you are absolutely doing the right thing by not letting this go and by also insisting that everything be done in writing.

    My sister is in the military and I agree that they just don't always operate effectively or ethically. Honestly it infuriates me to be honest.

    Anway, I am sending lots of prayers and support for you as you go through this situation.

    Many hugs,
    April

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  • born2swim
    replied
    Oh, I know you are hurt. I would be livid. Any thing that could happen in the OR needs to be told to the patient upfront (and they have to consent). Now, some huge, unforseen issue can come up... but a pelvic exam?!?!? I'm so sorry you are dealing with that and that they haven't even given you an apology. I hope you can get some headway with JHACO and USDHHS.

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  • ICNDonna
    replied
    I got the same understanding, Kim, but the reference to students is gone now.

    Donna

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  • vm
    replied
    I'm confused now, too. I thought the starter post said the med students all practiced pelvic exams after the cysto w/ hydro, but it doesn't say that now. Did they do the pelvics or did the doctor?

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  • Moonheart
    replied
    Originally posted by ICLori View Post
    The doctor in question had already given me several in-office pelvic exams within one year prior to the cystoscopy/hydrodistention. It was in my records that everything down there was within normal limits, no problems.

    This pelvic exam was NOT done for my benefit. It was done for training purposes or just for the heck of it.

    It was done without my consent. I was not told ahead of time it would be done. I was violated. My right to choose was taken away from me.

    I still consider such actions to be sexual assault. And it does legally meet the definition of medical battery. People have sued and won over things like this.
    Lori,

    Could you help me here? Did your doctor perform the pelvic exam himself? Or did students?

    Even if the doctor had done previous pelvics, if he did one this time under anaesthesia he would be able to get a far better pelvic done using more advanced equipment. I had one done during my cysto and never once thought of it as anything more than part of my diagnosis.

    Now, if however a medical student did the exam and I hadn't consented, then I would be far more upset about things.

    Can you please help me with my confusion and clear up these issues for me?

    Thanks,
    Moonheart

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  • Moonheart
    replied
    Originally posted by smcclafferty View Post
    I had a pelvic exam done as well during my cysto/hydro/biopsy, as stated on my surgical report. It says exactly "A full examination under anesthesia was performed including a bimanual examination. No masses in the adnexa were appreciated. There were no cervical lesions and no vaginal vault lesions"
    Personally, I have no problem with having this done, I just feel it was part of the whole examination to determine if I had interstitial cystitis or not. It does not bother me, because it was done to help rule out any other causes of my symptoms. I believe it was just part of the whole cysto/hydro/biopsy examination.
    This is what has confused me throughout the whole thread. Is the issue that they did an exam without consent, or that someone you didn't know of did the exam, or multiple people did exams?

    If it's the fact that an exam was done by the surgeon, then it seems to me to be implied that an exam will be done and is the purpose of the cysto/hydro.

    If it's that unknown's performed exam/s then that is more understandable as being violated if consent was not given.

    Could someone clear this up for me please?

    thanks,
    Moonheart

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  • ICLori
    replied
    P.S. I have decided to turn this over the the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (to investigate the HIPAA violation) and to JCAHO (to investigate how the hospital is doing non-consensual pelvic exams on women under anesthesia.)

    I'm taking myself out of the equation. All I've gotten from the patient advocate so far is being yelled at over the phone and not one "I'm sorry" or "What can we do for you?" or "I understand why you are so upset."

    Their only focus is on trying to intimidate me and shut me up and make me go away.

    Let's see how successful they are at yelling at those organizations and making them go away.

    Blessings,
    Lori

    Leave a comment:

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