Pelvic Exams Done on Anesthetized Women Without Consent: Still Happening

Arthur L. Caplan, PhD

Disclosures

May 02, 2018

In This Article

Touching Someone Without Consent Is Unethical

Why is this an utterly unethical way to teach students? Consider what it was that Larry Nassar did to so many women.

Larry Nassar, the once world famous USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University sports doctor, pleaded guilty last year to numerous counts of first degree criminal sexual conduct in two counties in Michigan. He admitted to using his trusted medical position to assault and molest girls.

An outraged judge Rosemarie Aquilina, after hearing from 150 women, sentenced him to 40 to 175 years in prison for seven counts that occurred in Ingham County, Michigan.

What exactly did Nassar do to the women?

Nassar touched the women's genitalia without their consent. He claimed to be treating them, although there is no evidence that digital manipulation of their vaginas had any medical purpose or rationale.

Touching someone without their consent in an intimate area is both unethical and illegal. Claiming a medical rationale for this sort of nonconsensual touching by a doctor is not an excuse.

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