Objective: Gynecologic examination of some individuals with intellectual disability can be especially problematic. Many of these women reside in a community setting and a widely applicable method for performing these examinations is desirable.
Methods: Intellectually disabled women were referred by their primary care providers for gynecologic examinations under sedation in the emergency room facility of a community hospital. Intravenous conscious sedation was administered under the direction of an emergency room physician.
Results: Thirteen adult women underwent 22 examinations over a four-year period. Papanicolau smears, screening for sexually transmitted disease and cervical and endometrial biopsies were obtained without complications. Hospital charges were relatively low and lengths of stay were short.
Conclusion: In selected individuals with intellectual disability, intravenous conscious sedation in a community hospital emergency room setting provides a safe, effective and relatively inexpensive means for performing gynecologic examinations.