Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

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Check for internal cuts

16 January, 2004

Question:

I have a regular IUD for the last 6 months and am also taking progesterone cream to try and balance out the very high oestrogen I have and very low progesterone. I am having a lot of problems with spotting or bleeding, usually on day 6 or 7 of my sheva neki'im. I ask a Rav to check and usually it is not ok. This is very frustrating and some months this has happened at least twice on day 7 of the sheva neki'im, making it almost a month till I go to mikvah.
With my last Sheilah, the Rav said it was a borderline stain and wanted me to go to be checked by a nurse at the hospital for any internal cuts or sores and said without this he couldnt give me an answer. I refused to go as I was already so upset with the situation and did not want an internal to check something which I knew not to be the problem. I have this problem every month, it is either connected to ovulation or the progesterone problem. Was I wrong to refuse? He then said he would take it to another Rav and get back to me but was upset over my refusal and when I ended up in tears feeling like I was being intimidated over it he suggested I needed a refresher course on the laws. I always work hard at the halachot and take it very seriously and ask sheilot but am becoming increasingly miserable over this. I am trying to work out the problem of spotting with the help of my Dr but in the mean time what can I do? I rang the hotline and they told me to cut down on the bedikot I am doing and how to do this, which has helped a bit. Is it normal to get woman to have their cervix checked? This to be seems just too much to ask. I am not new to taharat hamishpacha, we have been married 7 years and have 3 children, but this was the first time I had heard this. Please can you help me.


Answer:

It is really difficult to comment on your Rav's request without discussing it with him directly. It is not unusual for a rabbi to request that a nurse examine the cervix and vaginal canal for wounds. If a wound is found, we may at times attribute the bleeding to the wound. Bleeding from a wound does not make a woman niddah. Therefore the rabbi might have been looking for a possible cause for the bleeding which would not make you niddah.

A wound is always a possibility when there is an imbalance of hormones because the cervix may become very delicate. When a woman does her bedikot, she may cause a wound without even knowing it. If this is the case then an internal exam may be helpful. This is a possible reason for the Rav's request. 

This is a very trying situation. It may be worth speaking with your doctor about the implications of the treatment and if there are alternatives. You may also want to speak directly with a yoetzet halacha on our telephone hotline.


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