Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology and of Clinical Sciences, Danderyd Hospital, SE 182 88 Stockholm, Sweden; Department of Women's and Children's Health, Uppsala University Hospital, SE-751 85 Uppsala, Sweden. Electronic address: [Email]
OBJECTIVE : The present aim was to contribute to improving the traditional pelvic examination chair with vertical leg support and to evaluate patients' and examiners' experience of a new gyneacological and urological examination chair with heated upholstery. METHODS : A new gynaecological and urological examination chair was constructed with laterally adjustable leg support, a foot-plate and the perineum exposed only during the examination procedure. Patients (n = 131) with or without endometriosis were invited to participate in an anonymous questionnaire survey concerning how they experienced a gynaecological examination. METHODS : The patients and the gynaecologists who performed the examinations answered questionnaires evaluating the examination procedure in the traditional and in the new gynaecological and urological examination chair, respectively. The questionnaires asked about comfort, heating, integrity and the experience of pelvic examination with vertical or lateral leg support. The examination times were measured with a stop-watch. RESULTS : The majority of the answers (n = 131) were significantly (p < 0.05-0.001) in favour of the new concept with lateral leg support and with increased comfort and integrity. The average examination time was significantly shortened and the patients more relaxed in the new gynaecological and urological examination chair. CONCLUSIONS : The traditional gynaecological chair with vertical leg support has remained basically unchanged for many years. The present study showed that the pelvic examination procedure can be significantly optimized with easy patient-friendly adaptations.