Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Doctors must use scientific language in talking to blacks

Too bad if blacks don't understand

A sports medicine doctor in Tennessee managed to be racist, sexist and condescending all at once, by giving a patient the diagnosis of 'ghetto booty.'

55-year-old Terry Ragland was experiencing some lower back pain, so she decided to get it checked out at Sports Orthopedics & Spine in Jackson, Tennessee - a clinic she had been to before when she had knee surgery.

After having x-rays taken, Dr. Timothy Sweo came in to tell Ragland his diagnosis.  'He said "I know what the problem is: It's ghetto booty"' Ragland told WREG.

He explained that he 'was trying to take a technical conversation regarding your lower back and make it less technical.'

But that comment only further enraged Ragland who felt that he was dumbing it down for her.  'It says to me that he doubts what type of intellect I have, how intelligent I am to be able to understand what he conveys to me in a medical term.'

He said he was trying to explain her condition - lumbar lordosis - which is the curve of the lower spine which makes the buttocks protrude more.

'In trying to explain that I said that she had ghetto booty and she didn't like that apparently. That was my attempt to explain why she had the back problem.'



Anonymous said...

"Ghetto Booty" is not a medical term, and doctors and nurses would be well served to avoid using any "slang" when attempting to bring complex medical diagnosis into the vernacular. I often find myself being "talked down to" by physicians who have to assume that I have no great store of medical knowledge because I'm not in the field of Medicine. Sort of like I have to assume that I can't just use computer technology terms to describe system problems around doctors.

Anonymous said...

Stan, your point is ridiculous. How many average people have enough medical knowledge so that they understand technological terms? It's quite refreshing for a professional, a DR. in this case, to talk to average people in plain English so they understand. It save a lot of time and confusion.

BTW, where did you go to medical school?

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the women was more upset by the doctor explaining why she had a fat arse?

Anonymous said...

I have worked in the medical field 25 years and it didn't take very long to discover that most patients get a dazed look when you use medical terminology. Big medical terms often sound scary even when they are describing something harmless. I always use plain English to explain things and it seems to be the best for almost all patients. I don't feel I'm "dumbing down" the information. However, using slang words like ghetto booty makes you appear unprofessional.