Some doctors have the kinds of specialties that might make others cringe - but those doctors who specialize in reproductive and excretory systems are literal life savers! That doesn't mean they're immune to the sorts of embarrassing moments that happen to us all.
For them, though, a lot of those moments are totally commonplace. What could be the most humiliating medical moment of your life is just "Tuesday morning" for them - and in a way, that makes them even bigger heroes in our eyes.
One Reddit user asked:
Surprisingly, not a lot of actual medical professionals spoke up at first. We suppose they're so used to not talking about a patient's personal issues with anyone but them (thank you HIPPA!) that it took a while to get things going. Having said that, plenty of patients were willing to talk about their own mortifying experiences.
So the responses you're about to read are a mixed bag, some from medical professionals, some from patients, some from family members - all awkward.
I Remember When...Giphy
I'm a male nurse. I was working a rehab unit one time and had to give a younger gentleman a suppository due to no bowel movement for 4 days. I saw him a couple years later in a public place and he shouts out to me "Hey dude remember when your finger was in my butt!"
I wasn't sure what to say, it was a little awkward. So I just did this snapping finger gun back to him. That ended up being just as awkward. If not more.
The First Dad Joke
When my wife was giving birth our Gyno told her to give a big push. She did and proceeded to pee all over the doctors face (she was wearing a protective mask for just such an occasion so no harm no foul). Being terrified as I was that my wife was in the process of delivering our firstborn, I helpfully offered up "Don't worry, some people pay good money for that." I still hate myself for it.
Going The Distance
Surgical tech, I was in the OR prepping the patient for a bladder sling. Patient wasn't all the way under and while I was helping the surgeon, we heard coughing and what sounded like water falling. We turned and every time the patient coughed, urine shot out about two feet. We measured it, she had good distance. It wasn't awkward as much as interesting.
Talking About The Weather
In nursing school they taught us about how to insert a urinary catheter in men. There's this lidocaine lube that helps make an otherwise uncomfortable procedure considerably less uncomfortable. The catch is the you have to insert a syringe (not a needle) into the tip of the penis and inject lidocaine lube into the urethra and then hold the penis with your thumb over the urethra for five minutes. So like just hang out, holding a penis talking about the weather for five minutes.
Acquaintance was a 17-year-old male getting a physical from a female doctor. She was checking for a hernia, so grabbed his testicles and asked him to cough. In his nervousness, he misheard. He turned his head and did his best crow imitation: "Caw! Caw!"
Urology nurse here-
We had a teenager come in with his mother (we were not a pediatric urology office but saw teens on special occasions with a doctors OK)...
.. kid was masturbating with a cell phone charger and got it stuck in his bladder. We went in with cystoscopy to take a look and potentially remove it in office with no sedation. We enter his bladder and there is a huge KNOT in the cord. Kids acting like this is an everyday NBD kinda thing. Moms just sitting there horrified. Obviously he had to go to the OR due to the giant knot tied in the cord.
That was the weirdest.
Hand Delivery And Google
Yes!!! This is going to get buried, but I worked in a urologist's office for a long time. It's pretty wild and I have lots of stories (my poor boyfriend), but here are two of my favorites:
- Patients have to bring in semen samples post vasectomy to make sure there was no issue with the procedure so we can declare them sterile. We give them two sterile cups, paper bags, and instructions. One patient called a took the "just bring it in, hand deliver it!" directions too literally and tried to shove a handful of semen through the office window. I still have so many questions.
- Teenager comes in, thinks he might be sterile. We tell him to go home and bring us back a sample. He doesn't understand. I explain to him, professionally, that he should ejaculate into the cup we provided. He asks how. I think he's messing with me and just answer "masturbation." He asks what that is, and if his mom can help him. I don't know to this day if he was messing with me, but I'm pretty sure I just told him to Google it.
While getting a prostate exam for a physical, I asked if he could tell I'd been doing squats.
Without missing a beat he said yes.
At a gyno appointment when I was 19, I was all situated on the table with my legs up, fully exposed. The doctor was adjusting her wheely stool, it slipped, she lost her balance and went headfirst into my spread eagle crotch. Reflexively, I pulled my knees together, essentially putting her in a headlock with my thighs. It all happened in about 3 seconds but felt like an eternity of unending embarrassment and shock.
A Third Ball
I was getting snipped and they had me on some valium. Had a great conversation with the doc. We talked about vacations, homebrew, cars, etc. When he was done he said, "I've had such a nice chat with you I almost wish you had a third ball." Kinda made me tear up a bit.
"Man, This One's A Stinker!"
Last time I was at the gyno, my doctor was getting ready to start the exam while her assistant was opening one of the disposable tools. The assistant was having some issues and as soon as I got in the stirrups, the assistant said loudly, 'Man, this one's a stinker!'. I looked at her with my jaw dropped and it clicked a few seconds later that she was talking about the difficulty of opening the tool, and not my vagina. It was the most fun I've ever had at the lady doctor.
Patient here; For my first gyno visit I was pretty anxious and clumsy about the whole deal. After the nurse sat me down on the chair and made me spread my legs eagle style, my doctor walked in with 4 students in row, around same age as me.
So, eventually there was 6 people in the room, looking at my vagina in interest. At one point my doctor even said "Damn I wanted to show you some lumps or tumors today but looks like she is okay... I'm almost sad.'
I'm primary care. Older man teasing me after his prostate exam that I "took his anal virginity".
These both really offend me. I am NOT doing anything that is supposed to be pleasurable or having sex or taking anyone's virginity during exams. I am a doctor doing my job. I get ZERO jollies from it. If you think I did, you should report me. These jokes make me feel abused as the doctor quite frankly. I wish I had told the patients at the time that these comments are not appreciated.