I came across a really interesting article in Science Daily that explores the health risks that public weighing may be causing in women. Some are speculating that because being weighed in a doctor's office can be embarassing for many women, they are skipping necessary visits to the doctor and therefore are increasing the possibility of having health complications.
Study participants rated discomfort levels over a variety of weight related scenarios. The more dissatisfied a female was with her weight, the greater the discomfort she experienced when being weighed. But even the very concept of weight, tested by assigning some participants to wear a badge bearing the single word, "Weight," caused elevated levels of discomfort because it drew unwanted attention to what is considered an unflattering personal attribute for women.
I suppose it is possible that some women are avoiding the doctor because of embarassment. It's interesting to explore the health risks caused by weighing-in, but I think more important is to study the emotional effects of forcing women to step on the scale. I had a friend who developed a minor eating disorder because her doctor told her she was too heavy (since when is 135 pounds "too heavy"?) Additionally, there's the appalling fact that schools are requiring students to be weighed in gym classes. All four years of high school, I was forced to take a body fat test in my gym class. It was humiliating, and of course I was completely happy with my body until I saw that stupid little number. Actually, maybe it wasn't so much the number itself, but all the girls comparing their body fat percentages to each other after the test was over. I think someone needs to look into changing that policy.