A Tennessee woman has filed a complaint with the state's Department of Health following a doctor visit where she received a diagnosis for her curved spine as a case of "ghetto booty."

Terry Ragland, 55, arrived at Sports Orthopedics and Spine in Jackson, Tenn. complaining of lower back pain. After an X-ray, Dr. Timothy Sweo gave Ragland the grim diagnosis, which she has since called inappropriate, sexist, and a racial slur.

"He said 'I know what the problem is. It's ghetto booty,'" Ragland told WREG.

Sweo went on to clarify that Ragland suffered from lumbar lordosis, a curvature of the lumbar spine that can result from poor flexibility in the hip flexors, weak hamstring muscles, or other postural imbalances. Over time, increased stress on the lumbar spine can cause muscle pain or spasms.

Sweo informed Ragland that her "ghetto booty" had no cure, but said he could offer her something for the pain.

"I think I blacked out after he said ghetto booty," Ragland said. "I think my mind was just stuck on the phrase because I couldn't believe he said that."

Ragland's visit back in April was not the first time she had attended the doctor's office, she said, describing her experiences prior to Sweo's diagnosis as "good." This was the first time she had seen Sweo.

Ragland described her back pain as "one of those things where my hip seems to slip, like it's slipping out of place a little bit. It's painful when you get up to go walk it kind of slips, you know."

Sweo sent Ragland an apology letter soon after the incident. In the letter, he tried to explain why he used the term.

"I was trying to take a technical conversation regarding your lower back and make it less technical," he wrote to Ragland.

But the apology only made matters worse, she said.

"It says to me that he doubts what type of intellect I have," she said, "how intelligent I am to be able to understand what he conveys to me in a medical term."

Sweo conceded that he wouldn't use the term anymore in his professional practice; however, he had trouble understanding the offensiveness of his diagnosis.

"I think I do understand why her feelings were hurt but I don't understand what's offensive about it," he said. "That was probably inappropriate. She certainly felt that way and I won't do that anymore."

Ragland has since filed a complaint with the state, which will follow up and see if the claim is founded. The information will then be presented to the Board of Medical Examiners officer, who will determine if there will be disciplinary action.

"The next person might not take it like I do," Ragland said of Sweo. "And he might find himself in a very bad, bad situation."