A team of researchers at VIU have created an online survey to explore men’s comfort level regarding placement of genitalia in undergarments.

The anonymous survey consists of 20 question that ask participants to identify their age, hand dominance, type of undergarments worn, preference for side of genitalia placement in undergarments, and comfort related to placement of genitalia.

“This research will sensitize the nursing population to be more attentive to male placement of genitalia, and at best, make men more comfortable when they are unable to express themselves or adjust themselves,” Brenda Lane, an investigator behind the project, says.

The researchers have received 94 responses to date, “the results so far are indicating that the majority of men have a preference for the way they dress and that they would experience discomfort if placed opposite to their norm,” Lane, a BScN instructor at VIU, says.

She notes that the term “dress” refers to the placement of genitalia into undergarments.

Lane recalls that while she was a nursing student, she cared for a male patient with an organic brain syndrome. She says that he was unable to speak or move, but was able to feel discomfort and pain, and was aware of his surroundings.

“Every morning we bathed him and dressed him in his jeans for breakfast. During his morning care he had an erection and I wasn’t sure how to place his penis in his undergarments or jeans,” she says. “Years later, during a research course, [I was] encouraged to study something that would inform and be applied to nursing practice and something with an obvious literature gap.”

She was surprised to learn that men’s genital placement related to comfort level had not been studied.

“What was studied was men’s hand dominance and curvature or natural lie of the penis. Another study looked at nursing students’ discomfort with male genital care. Nothing however related to the man’s level of comfort,” she adds.

Lane hopes to publish the results of the survey in the near future. She says that the research team will be sharing their results with other schools of nursing at a provincial conference this April. The findings will also be used to enrich programs within VIU.

To take the survey visit <fluidsurveys.com/s/brendateresa/menscomfort/>.

For more information about this research study, please contact Lane at <Brenda.Lane@viu.ca>.