Social Norms Potentially Affecting Patient Care in Urology

The newest addition to our early online collection, “Factors Affecting the Completion of Genitourinary Physical Examinations Prior to Urologic Consultation,” examines an interesting instance of social norms potentially affecting patient care.

Complete and thorough physical examination is essential in the evaluation of patients with urologic disease. However, the sensitive nature of genitourinary examinations and the comfort level of clinicians in other specialties with such examinations can affect whether clinicians complete genitourinary examinations before requesting a urologic consultation.

Stryker and colleagues evaluated the frequency of genitourinary physical examinations performed prior to urologic consultation at a single institution to determine the influence of factors affecting their completion.

The authors found that male patients in the emergency department were 3.11 times more likely to receive a genitourinary examination than female patients. The likelihood of examination was significantly lower in patients aged ≥65 years than in patients in younger age groups. In general, clinicians omitted genitourinary examinations before requesting urologic consultations in >60% of patients.

Find more details about the study’s findings here.

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