Fatwa: # 41451
Category: Women
Country: Finland
Date: 9th April 2019

Title

Uncovering ‘awrah for medical checkups

Question

As salam aleikum wa rahmatullah,

I am 34 weeks pregnant and had my first cervical check-up yesterday. I wanted to avoid it because I wasn't sure if it's permissible to expose the awrah to another woman, especially since this checkup wasn't a medical treatment per se; it was done to check if the baby's head is facing down so as to avoid any complications and take the necessary steps to ensure that the head goes down during labour. I wasn't able to avoid the check-up because my doctor said it is routine during pregnancy and also childbirth to perform cervical check-ups. She did indicate that an ultrasound would achieve the same end but she said that it's better to get a cervical check-up instead. She also added that during childbirth they would do it every few hours anyway (and ultrasound wouldn't be an option then).

I would be highly grateful if you could please tell me whether these cervical check-ups during pregnancy and childbirth are permissible. Also, does the permissibility change depending on the person performing the check-ups (Muslim female, Muslim male, non-Muslim female, and non-Muslim male)?

JazakumAllah khair.

 

Answer

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salaamu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullaahi wa-barakaatuh.

Sister in Islaam,

In principle, it is impermissible to uncover one’s ‘awrah in the presence of anyone except one’s spouse. However, if there is a medical need, one will be excused to uncover only the required area. It is advisable that the doctor be of the same gender. However, if a doctor of the same gender is not available, then one will be excused to consult a doctor of the opposite gender[1].

In the enquired situation, you state that an ultrasound would have achieved the same results. Hence, there was no need to go for a cervical checkup. You should make tawbah and istighfaar.

However, in the case of during childbirth, you will be excused to go through cervical checkups as there are no alternatives.

 

And Allaah Ta’aala Knows Best.

Muajul I. Chowdhury

Student, Darul Iftaa

Astoria, New York, USA

 

Checked and Approved by,

Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

 

 

 


[1] الأشباه والنظائر لابن نجيم (ص: 73)

الضَّرُورَاتُ تُبِيحُ الْمَحْظُورَاتِ

 

التجريد للقدوري (12/ 6121)

 أن المعالجة ليست بواجبة وإن جاز كشف العورة لأجلها.

 

الأصل للشيباني (2/ 238)

فإن أصاب امرأة جرح او قرحة في موضع لا يحل للرجل أن ينظروا إليه فلا بأس بأن يعلم امرئة دواء ذالك الجرح...فإن لم يجدوا امرأة تداوي الجرح الذي بها أو القرحة و لم يقدروا علي امرأة تعلم ذالك، و خافوا علي المرأة التي بها الجرح او القرحة ان تهلك او يصيبها بلاء أو دخلها من ذالك وجع لا يحتمل، او لم يكن يداوي الموضع إلا رجل، فلا بأس بأن يستتر منها كل شيء إلا موضع الجرح او القرحة ثم يداوي الرجل و يغض بصره بما استطاع عن عورة، و ذات محرم و غيرها في ذالك سواء

 

الدر المختار شرح تنوير الأبصار وجامع البحار (ص: 656)

 ينظر) الطبيب (إلى موضع مرضها بقدر الضرورة) إذ الضرورات تتقدر بقدرها، وكذا نظر قابلة وختان وينبغي أن يعلم امرأة تداويها لان نظر الجنس إلى الجنس أخف.

 

بدائع الصنائع في ترتيب الشرائع (5/ 124)

وكذا إذا كان بها جرح أو قرح في موضع لا يحل للرجال النظر إليه فلا بأس أن تداويها إذا علمت المداواة فإن لم تعلم تتعلم ثم تداويها فإن لم توجد امرأة تعلم المداواة ولا امرأة تتعلم وخيف عليها الهلاك أو بلاء أو وجع لا تحتمله يداويها الرجل لكن لا يكشف منها إلا موضع الجرح ويغض بصره ما استطاع لأن الحرمات الشرعية جاز أن يسقط اعتبارها شرعا لمكان الضرورة

 

البحر الرائق شرح كنز الدقائق (8/ 218)

والطبيب إنما يجوز له ذلك إذا لم يوجد امرأة طبيبة

 

حاشية ابن عابدين (الرد المحتار) (6/ 370)

(قَوْلُهُ وَيَنْبَغِي إلَخْ) كَذَا أَطْلَقَهُ فِي الْهِدَايَةِ وَالْخَانِيَّةِ. وَقَالَ فِي الْجَوْهَرَةِ: إذَا كَانَ الْمَرَضُ فِي سَائِرِ بَدَنِهَا غَيْرَ الْفَرْجِ يَجُوزُ النَّظَرُ إلَيْهِ عِنْدَ الدَّوَاءِ، لِأَنَّهُ مَوْضِعُ ضَرُورَةٍ، وَإِنْ كَانَ فِي مَوْضِعِ الْفَرْجِ، فَيَنْبَغِي أَنْ يُعَلِّمَ امْرَأَةً تُدَاوِيهَا فَإِنْ لَمْ تُوجَدْ وَخَافُوا عَلَيْهَا أَنْ تَهْلِكَ أَوْ يُصِيبَهَا وَجَعٌ لَا تَحْتَمِلُهُ يَسْتُرُوا مِنْهَا كُلَّ شَيْءٍ إلَّا مَوْضِعَ الْعِلَّةِ ثُمَّ يُدَاوِيهَا الرَّجُلُ وَيَغُضُّ بَصَرَهُ مَا اسْتَطَاعَ إلَّا عَنْ مَوْضِعِ الْجُرْحِ اهـ فَتَأَمَّلْ وَالظَّاهِرُ أَنَّ " يَنْبَغِيَ " هُنَا لِلْوُجُوبِ

 

 

DISCLAIMER - AskImam.org questions
AskImam.org answers issues pertaining to Shar'ah. Thereafter, these questions and answers are placed for public view on www.askimam.org for educational purposes. However, many of these answers are unique to a particular scenario and cannot be taken as a basis to establish a ruling in another situation or another environment. Askimam.org bears no responsibility with regards to these questions being used out of their intended context.
  • The Shar's ruling herein given is based specifically on the question posed and should be read in conjunction with the question.
  • AskImam.org bears no responsibility to any party who may or may not act on this answer and is being hereby exempted from loss or damage howsoever caused.
  • This answer may not be used as evidence in any Court of Law without prior written consent of AskImam.org.
  • Any or all links provided in our emails, answers and articles are restricted to the specific material being cited. Such referencing should not be taken as an endorsement of other contents of that website.
The Messenger of Allah said, "When Allah wishes good for someone, He bestows upon him the understanding of Deen."
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim]