Humiliating airport pat-down for breast cancer survivor: an update on Lori Dorn's JFK incident

The health blog "Well" at the New York Times covers the case of Lori Dorn, a 44-year-old New York woman and friend of Boing Boing who learned in March that she had breast cancer. Over the weekend, I blogged here at Boing Boing about a horrible experience she had going through the TSA screening at JFK airport.

After tests revealed a high genetic risk for cancer, Ms. Dorn underwent a bilateral mastectomy in April as well as a grueling chemotherapy treatment that just ended in September. As part of her breast reconstruction, tissue expanders were implanted to stretch her skin before placement of a permanent breast implant.

But Ms. Dorn says that last week, on her way to San Francisco to visit friends, she was treated with hostility and humiliated after the tissue expanders were detected by a body scanning machine at Kennedy Airport in New York. She said the workers from the Transportation Security Administration would not let her retrieve a medical card explaining the implants, a situation she wrote about on her blog.

You can read Lori's first person account here, and my previous blog post is here. As Lori explains there and to the New York Times reporter, she went through a scan at the screening point, and wasn't even opposed to being patted down—she just wanted a chance to explain her medical situation and be taken to a private area for the physical pat-down. She said that was never offered. The TSA has since issued a statement.