The General Medical Council reported in 2014 that GPs need to make an additional effort to manage primary contact with male patients who have a genito-urinary problem, due largely to the continuing difficulties they experience in talking about their concerns.
The importance of this guidance was underlined by the findings of the GP Patient Survey 2016 which showed that, among people working full-time, far less men than women had recently visited their GP. Only 37% of men had seen their doctor in the past three months compared to 53% of women. In the same survey, 30% of men confessed that they would not take time off work if they noticed blood in their urine, and 40% would not even check an unexpected lump.
This reluctance seems to persist, with many men being similarly disinclined to speak out about diagnosed urological conditions, even when they have experienced problematic outcomes.
Clinical negligence specialists at Penningtons Manches LLP believe that the key to successful treatment is to act upon the warning signs of illness, as early diagnosis usually results in prompt treatment and maximises the chances of a full recovery. However awkward they may feel, patients should overcome their reluctance to discuss their symptoms with a medical professional.
A current case in which the firm is representing a middle-aged man demonstrates the sensitive nature of many of the issues which male clients experience. The patient in question was advised to undergo a circumcision as he suffered from phimosis due to Type II diabetes, meaning that his foreskin was difficult to retract. This condition can be common in people with diabetes, and while it was causing discomfort, the man had no difficulties with sexual intercourse prior to undergoing the procedure.
Following the circumcision, he unfortunately experienced a variety of problems. It appeared that too much of his foreskin was removed and that the cut made on the inner foreskin was far too deep, spanning up to one third of the penile shaft. The man is now constantly sore in the pubic region and can no longer have sexual intercourse or even stand to urinate as it is too uncomfortable. This injury has also had a significant psychological impact.
Penningtons Manches has a friendly and approachable clinical negligence team experienced in representing men who have received poor medical care resulting in a range of issues, including erectile dysfunction, pain on urination and psychological damage.
Each case is of course unique, but it is possible to claim damages where there has been a significant impact on health, and perhaps a loss of earnings, as a result of medical professionals failing to deal with male urological issues adequately.
If you have any concerns or queries about the medical care you or your family have received, please contact Penningtons Manches’ specialist team.