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North Dakota Board NDBME of Medical Examiners
Premature Retraction is Genital Abuse

NDBME 1999   NDBME 1995  Chancellor of Higher Ed.  Child Protection Services   ASAPT 

September 1994 Complaint from Romona Goheen against Manuel Neto.
February 1996 Complaint from Jody McLaughlin against Richard Dormont.

Ramona T. Goheen
Minot, ND 

September 3, 1994

Mr. Rolf Sletten, Executive Director
ND Board of Medical Examiners
418 East Broadway Suite C10
Bismark, ND 58501

Dear Mr. Sletten:

I am registering a complaint against the injury caused to my infant son's genitals by Dr. Manuel Neto, MD (FACS) at the Centennial Medical Center in Minot, ND on August 22. I brought my son in to get Dr. Neto's opinion on surgery regarding his hypospadias. He said that my son did not need reconstructive surgery to the urinary hole, but should be circumcised so he, "Doesn't get picked on by other boys because he won't be urinating straight". He also stated that "He won't learn as well in school if he doesn't get circumcised". Not only is routine circumcision medically unnecessary, but it is contraindicated when a condition such as hypospadias exists.

He forcibly retracted the foreskin without my permission causing it to redden, bleed, and swell, causing extreme pain to my son. I said to him, "I thought you were suppose to leave it (the foreskin) alone," while he was doing this but he still proceeded to force it back even after I said this. He gave no explanation for forcibly retracting the foreskin from the glans. If anyone else would have done that to my son, I would have them arrested.

I've enclosed information regarding infant genital care. All clearly state to leave the foreskin alone and not to retract it.

Please see that Dr. Neto, and all other North Dakota doctors, are also informed on infant genital care so that he and other doctors do not put other children, along with their parents through this excruciating pain. I look forward to your prompt response. Thank you.


Ramona Goheen


cc Manuel Neto, MD

Jon Rice, MD, [State Health Officer]
Terry Hoff, Trinity Medical Center
Dean Mattern, St. Joseph's Hospital


[No action was taken on this complaint.]


February 11, 1996
Jody McLaughlin
PO Box 209
Minot, North Dakota

Rolf Sletten, Director
ND Board of Medical Examiners
418 East Broadway, Suite 12
Bismarck, North Dakota 58501

Dear Mr. Sletten, North Dakota Board of Medical Examiners and the Commission on Medical Competency:

Regard this as a formal complaint about Dr. Richard Dormont and any other doctors your investigation shows are also performing unnecessary, painful genital alterations on infants and children. Parents of male and female children have told me about Dr. Dormont and other physicians disregard for the normal anatomical development and health of their children's genitals.

Even though one Minot mother's reasons for taking her son to Dr. Dormont had nothing to do with the baby's genitals, during the examination he forcibly retracted the child's foreskin, causing the baby considerable pain. He appears to knows nothing about the gradual separation which occurs as the inner surface of the prepuce gradually separates itself from the glans. Either Dr. Dormont is painfully misinformed regarding the normal physiological changes taking place during the gradual developmental maturation of childrens' genitals, or he is perverting his practice of pediatrics.

Another mother brought her 15 month old daughter to Dr. Dormont for a condition which, again, had nothing to do with her genital area. During the examination he said "Oh, she has labial adhesions.* I can take care of that." Over the mothers explicit objections, he grabbed a long swab (the kind on a wooden stick), stuck it in her vagina and slit her open "like a ziplock storage bag." Seeing the look of disbelief on the mother's face Dr. Dormont said this was very common. Her daughter bled into her diaper for three days.

Later she found out he had done this to a friend's daughter as well. She contacted a medical professional who asked a second pediatrician about labial adhesions,* he said, "Is Dr. Dormont still doing that? Labial adhesions should never be forcibly torn apart. Our experience has been that under the hormonal influence of puberty, labial adhesions Just naturally separate on their own. We don't recommend any intervention." I will remind the Board this act is prohibited by ND Criminal Code as of July 1, 1995, any person who knowingly separates or surgically alters normal, healthy, functioning genital tissue of a female minor is guilty of a class C felony. Last December, in South Dakota, a man was sentenced to 40 years in prison for digitally penetrating the vagina of a 16 month-old child, (see enclosed Minot Daily News, December 2, 1995 pg 134). From the child's perspective, what is the difference between what happened to the toddler at the hands of her mother's boyfriend, or the little girl at the hands of a licensed physician?

Dr. Dormont and other physicians have used their hands or devices to separate temporarily fused, normal genital structures, this is wrong and it must stop.

When will this complaint be placed on the meeting schedule? Your timely response indicating what procedures the Board of Medical Examiners and the Commission on Medical Competency will take to resolve this pattern of practice regarding the genital integrity of children is expected.

Last month you indicated you would be contacting Robert Van Howe, MD** for medical information regarding infant circumcision practices. He has not been contacted by your office. When will you get in touch with Dr. Van Howe?

Your office has not sent me the NDBME Newsletter which includes the reference to the circumcision issue. When can I expect to receive it? [It eventually did arrive.]


Jody McLaughlin

* The midline surface of the labia in young females and the inner mucosa of the prepuce in young male children continue to share a common membrane, synechia, which gradually and painlessly separates over a period of time. These temporary, connecting membranes are not adhesions. Adhesions are scar tissue, not normal developmental anatomical structures.

**Robert Van Howe, MD
Marshfield Clinic
PO Box 1390
Minocqua, Wisconsin 54548-1390

enc. American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines for the care of the uncircumcised penis

Copies to Governor Schaefer
Dr. Jon Rice
Attorney General
, Heidi Heitkamp

ND Century Code 43-17-3 1. Grounds for disciplinary action. Disciplinary action may be imposed against a physician upon any of the following grounds:

2. The making of false or misleading statements about the efficacy of any treatment, or remedy.

6. The performance of any unethical conduct likely to deceive, defraud, or harm the public.

7. Obtaining any fee by fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation.

15. Gross negligence

16. Sexual abuse, misconduct, or exploitation related to the licensed practice of medicine.

21. A continued pattern of inappropriate care as a physician, including unnecessary surgery.

22. The use of any false fraudulent or deceptive statement in any document connected with the practice of medicine.


[No action was taken on this complaint.]


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