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Critically Speaking

Oct 20, 2021

Sexual assaults of women, men, and children are always in the news. We know a lot about this when it comes to little children, but for adults, especially women, what constitutes a sexual assault? Lack of consent, forced intimate relations? How does one prove an assault took place? Often the information provided by medical forensic experts is brought to bear on these cases. Today's guest, Dr. Felice Gersh, is not only a distinguished OBGYN and Integrative Medicine Specialist, but she often serves as an expert witness when medical forensics are required to clarify if or what type of sexual assault took place. This is an important, interesting, and sometimes very fuzzy topic. In today’s episode, Therese Markow and Dr. Gersh discuss this process and the challenges of sexual assault cases.


 Key Takeaways:

  • When reporting acute sexual assaults, there are special nurses in the hospital called SANE nurses, sexual assault nurse examiners, that will do a detailed forensic examination on the victim. These exams are standardized nationally.
  • In the courtroom, you speak about genitalia as the body parts they are. It makes everyone feel more comfortable when you speak of things anatomically rather than treating them as hush hush. 
  • As a forensic medical expert, it is important to report the facts and what can or cannot be possible, not to decide if someone is innocent or guilty. 


"My job [as a medical forensic expert] is really an educator. My job is to review the evidence, then explain everything in as clear, plain, and understandable language as I can to a jury so that they will understand what the evidence really means." —  Dr. Felice Gersh


Connect with Dr. Felice Gersh:

Professional Bio: 






Book: PCOS SOS: A Gynecologist's Lifeline To Naturally Restore Your Rhythms, Hormones, and Happiness 


Connect with Therese:


Twitter: @CritiSpeak




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