Exposing patients awrah

Aug 14, 2021 | Uncategorized


I am a student who is deeply inclined towards the emergency medical field. I have extensive training in the regard and I am confident I can -only if Allah wills- make the difference between someone’s life and death with my knowledge and equipment. So coming to my question, what we are taught in the management of trauma is that whenever you come across a traumatically injured patient, uncover them, or to be clear, cut all their clothes off so you can see their whole body. The reasoning for this is quite simple that you need to make sure they don’t have any other injuries than what you see through their clothes. Now my question is that if I, as a male, approach an motor vehicle accident scene for example, and I come across a female who is traumatically injured, would it be halal for me to undress her to assess her situation and injuries? Also in another case, if I find myself as a bystander, in the case of a woman who goes into labour and I’m the only medical professional on scene, and I have reasonable grounds to believe either the mother or the fetus is in distress, can I, in the context of Islam, deliver this baby? I am medically competent to do these procedures, my question is only from an Islamic permissibility point of view. I will wait for your answer.
Thank you!


In normal circumstances it is prohibited to look and touch those parts of a person’s body which are to be covered i.e. the ‘awrah. However, in cases of need and emergency, including a medical emergency, it is permissible for a medical practitioner to look at  parts of the patients body which require treatment, even if it is an area which should under normal circumstances be covered. As this is done out of need, one should minimise the exposure and only uncover that part of the body which is necessary for treatment and should avoid looking at the body unnecessarily.

Also, if there is a medical practitioner of the same sex as the patient then that person must tend to the patient as this will minimise the violation of shar’i principles. Only, if a practitioner of the same sex is not available, or is available but requires further assistance, would it be permissible for a practitioner of the oppose sex to step in and support.

Usually the organisation one is working for, will have guidelines in place in relation to when the body needs to be uncovered and how much can be uncovered. Provided this is done based on medical need and in a professional manner, it would be permissible.

الدر المختار وحاشية ابن عابدين (رد المحتار) (4/ 36)
مطلب المواضع التي يحل فيها النظر إلى عورة الأجنبي (قوله لإباحته لتحمل الشهادة) ومثله نظر القابلة والخافضة والختان والطبيب وزاد في الخلاصة: من مواضع حل النظر للعورة عند الحاجة الاحتقان والبكارة في العنة والرد بالعيب فتح. قلت: وكذا لو ادعى الزاني بكارتها

الدر المختار وحاشية ابن عابدين (رد المحتار) (6/ 370)
وشرائها ومداواتها – ينظرالطبيب إلى موضع مرضها بقدر الضرورة إذ الضرورات تتقدر بقدرها وكذا نظر قابلة وختان …

وينبغي أن يعلم امرأة تداويها لأن نظر الجنس إلى الجنس أخف

(قوله وينبغي إلخ)

كذا أطلقه في الهداية والخانية. وقال في الجوهرة: إذا كان المرض في سائر بدنها غير الفرج يجوز النظر إليه عند الدواء، لأنه موضع ضرورة، وإن كان في موضع الفرج، فينبغي أن يعلم امرأة تداويها فإن لم توجد وخافوا عليها أن تهلك أو يصيبها وجع لا تحتمله يستروا منها كل شيء إلا موضع العلة ثم يداويها الرجل ويغض بصره ما استطاع إلا عن موضع الجرح اهـ فتأمل والظاهر أن ” ينبغي ” هنا للوجوب

Answered by:
Ifta Research Fellow

Checked & Approved by:
Mufti Abdul Rahman Mangera
Mufti Zubair Patel