55-year-old Terry Ragland has filed an official complaint with the Tennessee Department of Health after her physician and orthopedist, Dr Timothy Sweo diagnosed her chronic lower back pain was a result of her ‘ghetto booty’.
“I think I blacked out after he said ghetto booty. I think my mind was just stuck on the phrase because I couldn’t believe he said that,” said Ragland, in an interview with area news outlet WREG that has been quoted by the Huffington Post.
Dr Theo sent an apologetic letter to Ragland later, claiming his use of the (at best) colloquial phrase was an attempt to explain her condition in “less technical” terms.
I think it’s fair to say the good doctor has succeeded, in that regard at least.
“What I was trying to explain to that patient is that she has lumbar lordosis, which is a fancy name for the curve of the lower spine that makes the buttocks protrude more. In trying to explain that I said that she had ghetto booty,” said Sweo to the Huffington Post.
He also said that he could understand why Mrs Ragland’s feelings had been hurt by the callous wording of his diagnoses – what with her being an African American woman and the phrase ‘ghetto booty’ being nothing if not a racial stereotype.
The American National Institute of Health apparently defines lumbar lordosis as an “inward curve of the lumbar spine (just above the buttocks).” It even suggests a slightly more layman friendly explanation on its website, saying that the phrase “swayback” can be substituted for lordosis if necessary.
In future, Tim, you should probably do a quick Google search of something before you open your mouth.
Terry Ragland’s official complaint will now be processed by the Tennessee Department of Health who will ‘investigate’ as to whether or not Dr Sweo needs to be disciplined.
Image: National Institute of Health