Monday, August 29, 2005

Rectal Exam Sensitivity Improved Without Gloves
“What we found was striking,” says Casiano. “Basically, a glove appears to really hinder these exams. You wind up missing a LOT of things. Like tiny little hemorrhoids you never even knew were there. Or, little irregularities in the shape of the prostate. While not clinically relevant for the most part, these are things we feel physicians ought to know about their patients.”

Based on the findings, Casiano’s group is recommending that all physicians either forgo the use of gloves entirely during rectal exams, or at least cut the index finger off from the gloves. Also recommended is that physicians who do a great number of rectal exams, e.g. gastroenterologists, should keep their fingernails neatly trimmed, as fecal material “tends to accumulate” under the nails.

“Doing rectal exams without gloves may sound a little repulsive at first,” added Casiano, “but we find that physicians eventually like the bonding experience it gives with their patients. And you’d be surprised – a little antibacterial hand gel goes a long way."
I'm sorry, did you say that physicians like the bonding experience?