Thursday, 16 August 2018
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A creepy feeling, a sideways glance – patients of accused former USC gynecologist share their stories

A creepy feeling, a sideways glance – patients of accused former USC gynecologist share their stories
02 Jun
4:44

“I was feistier than he expected, and it rattled him”

The first red flag, said Alexis Rodriguez, was a Playboy magazine on Tyndall’s office desk.

In 1995, the then-23-year-old had gone to the campus health clinic for treatment of vaginal pain. After she put her feet in the stirrups, Tyndall diagnosed her condition as a Bartholin’s abscess. He said he needed to drain it, she recalled. She said he did not put on gloves or use an anesthetic.

“He nicked me with the scalpel,” she said; the pain was excruciating and she recoiled on the table.

She said that when Tyndall realized how upset she was, he told her that usually patients didn’t mind the pain because of the immediate relief the lancing brought. He did not continue with the procedure and told her, “You should go see someone else,” she said.

“I was feistier than he expected, and it rattled him.”

She had the abscess lanced by another USC physician outside the clinic under “twilight” anesthesia. Months later, she returned to the clinic for a non-gynecological visit. She looked at her chart and started reading Tyndall’s account of the visit.

She said he’d written that she had refused treatment and was “difficult.”

“It kinda bothered me that I was being called this hysterical woman,” she said. “It was a mischaracterization.”

She complained to the doctor who was treating her that day and later filed a complaint with the clinic.

She mentioned the Playboy, the botched lancing and Tyndall’s failure to use gloves.

“This was ’95. The AIDS thing was not that far in the past,” she said.

Tyndall, in an interview with The Times, said that he always used gloves when examining patients.

No one from USC interviewed her, she said, but a clinic administrator wrote back and apologized, indicating that the “difficult” wording would be removed from her file.

Rodriguez, 46, said she could not locate the original letter, but did provide The Times with one she wrote in 1995 praising the doctor who successfully treated her. In the letter, Rodriguez mentions the student health clinic and her “terrible experience with a doctor on staff there.”

As a law enforcement officer, it’s her opinion that “USC should cooperate more than anyone has ever seen an entity cooperate” in any police investigation of Tyndall.

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