Male genital examination in the medical curricula: an exploration of medical students’ experience

Andrew Jayasuria, Andy Wearn, Anna Vnuk, H Bhoopatkar

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    39 Downloads (Pure)


    INTRODUCTION One of the challenges regarding the teaching and learning of the male genital examination as part of the undergraduate medical curriculum relates to the extent of practice opportunities with patients in the clinical setting. OBJECTIVES To quantify how many male genital examinations have been performed on real patients by medical students at the point of graduation, and to explore the context of performing the examination with patients. METHODS A self-completed, online, anonymous questionnaire was developed and deployed as part of a two-centre study. Data were collected from final-year medical students in the period just after graduation from the medical programmes at the Universities of Auckland and Flinders in late 2013. RESULTS The combined response rate was 42.9% (134/312). The median for the number of male genital examinations performed was 2-3. A total of 16% of medical students had never performed a male genital examination. Self-reported opportunities for performing the male genital examination were strongly related to the setting (e.g. urology and paediatrics/neonates). The largest self-reported barrier was related to patients being uncomfortable being examined by female students. CONCLUSIONS For some students, their only experience of performing male genital examinations is on a model in simulation. Opportunities to perform the male genital examinations that students feel comfortable with are rare. The delivery of medical curricula needs to address this issue.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)11-14
    Number of pages4
    JournalNew Zealand Medical Student journal
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019

    Bibliographical note

    New Zealand Medical Student Journal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.


    • Male genital examinations
    • medical curricula
    • practice opportunities
    • medical students
    • simulation


    Dive into the research topics of 'Male genital examination in the medical curricula: an exploration of medical students’ experience'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this