"requested to be seen by female got male ."

About: City Hospital campus

I have just had a cystoscopy at City, I was very very scared and due to having had difficult life experiences, I phoned and asked that the procedure was carried out by a female. The nurses I spoke to were lovely, very very kind and reassuring. I felt that they totally understood and acknowledged the reasons for my request. I was told that there was going to be a male on duty the day of my appointment but that a female would carry out the procedure for me.I felt much less anxious about going to the appointment knowing that I would not have to be examined by a male. When I got there this was not the case at all. A nurse did speak to me they were very kind and told me they were tracking down a female doctor and I was very relieved as I was shaking with fear and crying by this time. They went away and I never saw them again. then I was called into the clinic room by the male nurse. I was very distressed by now and told him and the two other staff present about the reasons for my wanting a female to carry out the procedure giving them my history. I did not feel they understood how upset I was , they said I could come back on another day when there would be a woman on duty but I could not face going away and then getting all wound up again so I went ahead with the test. The test itself was fine but I found it highly upsetting to have my genitalia touched by a man, they literally spread your labia with their fingers to clean you and then spread them again prior to inserting the device. As a survivor of sexual trauma I found this horrible and upsetting. I had explained all this on the phone and as I said they were very kind and supportive. Two hours after my appointment I went shopping and I had flashbacks of the assault I suffered, I could not breathe, I was back in that horrible moment which I had not thought about for years. I fully appreciate that many women are fine being examined by a male but I am not for what I feel are very valid reasons. . On a separate point I was also told that a local anesthetic is always used and gel was put on my urethra which I assumed was an anesthetic.It was in fact lubricant. The device was inserted immediately and I asked ii f they were not going to wait for the anesthetic to take effect. I was told that they never use anesthetic and it hurt me because I currently have a sore urethra due to a having thrush. I was not asked about any medication I was on despite the appointment letter requesting that I write it all down. As I am on quite a lot of medication I did this thinking it was necessary but it is not. All the staff were polite and professional and acted very quickly when a male patient strayed into the female only waiting area,

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Responses

Response from Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust

I am deeply concerned to read about your experience and would like to apologise for the way you felt while in our care. Unfortunately it isn’t always possible to find female members of staff immediately when patients require treatment. We were unaware of this sensitive issue until your arrival. The male nurse who carried out the procedure discussed the different treatment options with you, including rescheduling your procedure, waiting longer for a female clinician to arrive or having the procedure done in theatre under general anaesthetic. We understand the deep distress this caused you. Please contact 0115 9249924 ext. 67184 or email Andrea.smith2@nuh.nhs.uk if you wish to discuss further.

Kind regards,

Andrea Smith, Sister for Urology Outpatients.