Idaho lawmaker asks if woman can swallow camera for gynecological exam before medical abortion


BOISE, Idaho — An Idaho lawmaker received a brief lesson on female anatomy after asking if a woman can swallow a small camera for doctors to conduct a remote gynecological exam.

The question Monday from Republican Rep. Vito Barbieri came as the House State Affairs Committee heard nearly three hours of testimony on a bill that would ban doctors from prescribing abortion-inducing medication through telemedicine.

Dr. Julie Madsen was testifying in opposition to the bill when Barbieri asked the question. Madsen replied that would be impossible because swallowed pills do not end up in the vagina.


  1. I hate to give this numbnuts the benefit of the doubt but he may have been trying to make an argument that telemedicine doesn’t apply in this case.

    1. Seems you are right – He asked the question on purpose.

      Barbieri: “You mentioned the risk of colonoscopy , can that be done by drugs?”

      Dr. Julie Madsen: “It cannot be done by drugs. It can, however, be done remotely where you swallow a pill and this pill has a little camera, and it makes its way through your intestines and those images are uploaded to a doctor who’s often thousands of miles away, who then interprets that.”

      Barbieri: “Can this same procedure then be done in a pregnancy? Swallowing a camera and helping the doctor determine what the situation is?”

      Madsen: “It cannot be done in pregnancy, simply because when you swallow a pill, it would not end up in the vagina.” (Hoots of laughter from the audience)

      Barbieri: “Fascinating. That certainly makes sense, doctor.”

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