Viral Reddit thread calls out why many gynecological procedures are done without pain medication

The post sparked an important conversation about the gender bias in medicine.

Viral Reddit thread calls out why many gynecological procedures are done without pain medication
Cover Image Source: Reddit/Ancient-Abs, Getty Images/Pramote Polyamate

Trigger Warning: This story contains graphic details of pain and health procedures that readers may find disturbing.

A recent post in the r/TwoXChromosomes subreddit sparked an important conversation when one commenter asked why many gynecological procedures are done without giving the patient any pain medication. The user, Ancient-Abs, pointed out that this was yet another double standard in healthcare as rarely are the needs, preferences, and bodily autonomy of women — or members of any other marginalized group — respected like those of cisgender men. "I am so fu**ing tired of the discrimination that women face when it comes to medical treatment. From being gaslighted, denied therapy, or misdiagnosed, this discrimination often costs women their lives," they wrote.


"One particular horrible mistreatment of women is the performance of gynecological procedures without pain medication or anesthetic. If someone were to take a biopsy of the scrotum, you sure as hell know they would numb the area. Hell, often they put numbing medicine in the shaft of male penises for just inserting a foley! The cervix has sensation. Why are cervical biopsies taken without numbing? Why are endometrial biopsies taken without numbing medicine? Why are IUDs inserted without numbing?" the commenter asked. "It is horrific. I’ve had an IUD inserted and I went hypotensive and passed out from the pain. I had to be monitored for several hours afterward. Why is this permitted? How can we change it?"

Image Source: Reddit/Ancient-Abs

As the thread went viral on the platform, thousands of commenters shared their personal experiences of having been through incredibly painful procedures while being told that they would feel "just a pinch." Here are some of the most horrific stories shared:


Image Source: Reddit/AIcookies


Image Source: Reddit/LucyWritesSmut
Image Source: Reddit/Raspberry_crown


Image Source: Reddit/notthefakehigh5r
Image Source: Reddit/notthefakehigh5r


Image Source: Reddit/MarinaA19
Image Source: Reddit/MarinaA19


Image Source: Reddit/la_bel_iconnu


Image Source: Reddit/z0ld0rg
Image Source: Reddit/z0ld0rg


Image Source: Reddit
Image Source: Reddit


Image Source: Reddit/Firethorn101


Image Source: Reddit/MissAnthrope94


Image Source: Reddit/CanadaOD
Image Source: Reddit/CanadaOD


Image Source: Reddit/unaluna


Image Source: Reddit/colabearrrr


Image Source: Reddit/Skorpionfrau


Image Source: Reddit/femmefatalx


Image Source: Reddit/munchikin
Image Source: Reddit/munchikin