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Medical Fetishes II
by Laural Wood, R.n.m.N.
August 1999

Medical scenes in the BDSM community use a myriad of actual medical instruments including sounds. Used heavily in the gay scene for years, these once surreptitious implements are now used globally. Seeking an edgier, more exotic form of penile stimulation, the sound has come out of the closet and into the scene play clinics and dungeons everywhere.

Sounds are medical devices designed to be inserted into the male urethra or the female urethra and uterus. They consist of a set of smooth stainless steel rods in graduated sizes or a singular piece, which may be straight or slightly curved on the ends. In actual medical purposes, sounds are used for gradually, gently enlarging the urethra or for measurements. In a BDSM medical scene they can be a source of exceptional sensual stimulation. Again, with prudence, this sort of play is not something you should engage in with someone who is inexperienced or who does not understand all the necessary precautions otherwise, your fun can result in infection, injury, or other traumatic problems.

There is a natural curve within the penile urethra, which the slight curve of the sound is designed to accommodate. It allows the sound to slip down the penis and into the bladder. To insert easily, generous amounts of sterile lubricant without preservative or nonoxynol-9 (these are highly irritating to the urethra) is needed. Try some surgical lubricant jelly. Be aware, though, if the "patient" gets hard before, during or after insertion, be sure to let the erection subside before trying to insert or remove the sound. To negotiate the curve with the straight Sim sound, try changing the angle of the penis during insertion; however, this requires quite a bit more skill and sensitivity. It may be necessary for the "patient" to "feel" the sound sliding to where it belongs as the "doctor" or "nurse" assists him! Remember, never, ever force this (or any) device into the penis!

The diameter of sounds, catheters and some other medical instruments is expressed in the French system. One French unit (Fr) is .33 millimeters (.3mm for ease of discussion). Thus, an instrument which is 20Fr is 20 x .3 = 6mm in diameter (0.24").

The various types of sounds, sound sets and their sizes, shapes and uses vary within the medical profession. For the purpose of scene popularity and availability, we are describing the Hegar set and the Sim sound, named after their inventors. The Hegar sounds are available as an 8 piece set in graduated sizes from 3fr/4fr to 17fr/18fr and are about 22cm (8.25") long in their own zippered carrying case. These sounds have double sizing on each. For example, the 3fr/4fr sound has a 3fr width on the one end to about half way down the sound (11cm or 4.125"), while the other end of the same sound has a diameter of 4fr for its half.

The Sim sound is straight or curved tipped, about 32cm or 12" long which includes a flattened handle on one end and is about .5cm or .125" thick. The Sim sound was designed for medical use as a way to measure the depth of the uterus during pregnancy. It has graduated "notches" along the length of the sound, which are used as a "dip stick"

Sterilizing for personal use is very important to prevent infections. After use, wash the sounds in a hot water and soapy anti-bacterial detergent solution (detergents remove surface lubricants or surgical jelly and help break down viral coats). Allow to dry on a clean towel. Use an alcohol swab over the instrument before insertion during next session.

Updated note: we highly recommend only using insertables, speculum, anal toys, sounds, etc. for one person usage, only! Sharing or "sterilizing" for use with multiple persons is very risky without proper anti-HIV, anti-STD sterilizing procedures and equipment.

Another enormously popular medical device for both males and females in the medical BDSM scene is the Speculum.The actual medical application is examination of the rectum or the vagina. Usually, it is made of steel in a duckbill shape with two "jaws" which "open" with a screw-type mechanism, thus, stretching the opening to give a clear view down the center into the vagina or rectum. There are also plastic disposable variations of specula. Objects such as swabs can be inserted through the opening into the orifice. It also allows for pouring cool or warm water into the opening. However here's another caution, though, DO NOT use water that is too hot and DO NOT use ice since they can permanently damage the delicate tissue lining inside the anus or the vagina.

The slow increase of tension on the opening of the rectum wall or the vaginal cavity is useful in fisting as a way of gradually stretching and relaxing the sphincter or vagina. A lubricant such as a surgical lubrating jelly is highly recommended for ease of insertion. The sterilization after use is also imperative. Clean and wash as described in the sounds section and as with the sounds, these medical toys should only be used on one person. We highly recommend that each person plays with his/her own toys, always!

Storage of metal devices, sounds and specula should be in plastic or glass to add to their longevity. This will protect from corrosion and discoloration.  


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