Is This Normal? Pediatrician Threatened to Hold Down My Child

I was really uncomfortable with something that happened at the pediatrician yesterday. This could be nothing out of the ordinary, but I’ve never seen it happen myself.

My daughter wasn’t feeling well. Based on her symptoms, the nurse suggested a strep test. My child is eight years old and has never had one, but she knows what it involves and was extremely concerned. As she began to cry, the nurse asked if we preferred having the doctor administer the throat swab. He’s a pediatrician. Surely, this isn’t the first time a child has been afraid before trying something new or scary, right? At the very least, he could talk some sense into her.

What he did, was the exact opposite. 

Very sternly, he told her to stop crying - several times, "shushed" when she'd ask a question, and proceeded say, “if you don’t cooperate I’ll have to get two nurses to come in and hold you down.” Again, my child is 8. 

I stepped in and asked if the test was absolutely necessary, explaining that I didn’t want her to fear visiting the doctor when she’s sick. He had already examined her throat and listened to her lungs saying everything seemed clear. Why would he push the issue? He agreed it wasn’t necessary.

This was NOT the doctor we usually see, but he's part of the practice. So, WHY would he put her through that?  Is this normal? Is this something you’d bring up to management? Or, maybe I'm making a big deal out of nothing. It was definitely "something" to us. 

Amy Paige

Amy Paige

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