Does Gynecological Exam Invalidate the Fast?

09 May, 2019
Q Respected scholars, as-salamu `alaykum and Ramadan mubarak. I am fasting Ramadan and I have a gynecological appointment that is necessary. I have made it as late in the day as possible and my doctor is female. Iftar is very late in the day and it is not possible to make an appointment after iftar. My friends told me that if I go to the gynecologist and she touches me "there" I will negate my fast for the day. I asked my husband and he said he doesn't think so. I have no one to ask as I am a revert for a few years and do not have a female family member who is Muslim to ask and I am shy to ask my mother-in-law. I need to know an answer to this and if I need to make this day up. I am leaning toward its being OK as it is medical, very necessary, and non-sexual in nature, but I still question so if you could answer, please, it will be much appreciated.

Answer

Wa `alaykum As-Salamu wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.


In this fatwa:

A gynecological exam during the days of Ramadan is not among things that nullify fasting. So do not worry about your fasting and go ahead with your doctor’s appointment.


In his response to your question, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states:

I commend you for your zeal to know the rules of your religion. I pray that Allah grant us all beneficial knowledge, humble hearts, and acceptable deeds, amen.

Coming to the question you have raised, let me state the following:

The gynecological exam you need to undergo for medical reasons will not nullify your fast, for it does not fall in the category of things that invalidate the fast. Fasting is obviously nullified by deliberate consumption, intake, or ingestion of food, nutrients, or drinks; sexual intercourse; induction of emission of semen [or, in the case of women, sexual secretions] through masturbation or other activities; induction of vomiting; cupping; onset of menses or bleeding of childbirth; or deliberate intention to break the fast.

The exam you have mentioned does not fall in any of the above categories.  So you need not worry about going ahead with the exam.

Allah Almighty knows best.

Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.