Women who have been sexually abused and/or raped often struggle with having pelvic exams performed on them even decades after the trauma. Here is a great post they can print out and take to the healthcare provider showing a pelvic exam is often NOT justified.
There is a hidden battle brewing within the medical community about the misuse of physicians’ valuable time. Three female Doctors have come together to write a compelling journal article showing how the significant amount of time physicians spend conducting pelvic exams on asymptomatic women is unjustified. Doctors Westhoff, Jones, & Guiahi (2011) state “Overuse of the pelvic examination contributes to high healthcare costs without any compensatory health benefits“.
Physicians use four justifications for conducting pelvic examinations, but Westhoff, et al. (2011) reveal how the justifications are no longer relevant in light of current research, advancements in technology, and new guidelines put in place to reduce harms of over screening for cervical cancer. The four justifications used by physicians to conduct pelvic exams on asymptomatic women, together with the counter-arguments against them by the research authors, can be summarized as follows:
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