"Year and a half of waiting"

About: Wishaw General Hospital / General Surgery

(as the patient),

Back in 2012 I was taken into Wishaw A&E with severe pain in my lower abdomen. After an ultrasound and blood tests I was taken into theatre where I had a cyst on my left ovary aspirated. However the pain continued to get worse and I found myself developing more symptoms so I visited my GP on many occasions. Sometimes I was told there was nothing wrong and sent home with medication for IBS and pain relief and sometimes I was referred straight to Wishaw where on my last referral was told without even been seen by anyone that there was nothing they could do for me.

I eventually got an appointment with a surgeon who arranged for me to have another ultrasound and a colonoscopy, I got my colonoscopy in early 2013. The results came back clear and was advised there is nothing needing done from a surgical point of view and there is nothing sinister to worry about.

By mid 2013 my health had deteriorated significantly so I had a blood test done at my GP. 5 days later the doctor called me in and sent me straight back to Wishaw, this time by ambulance, as my haemoglobin was at 7 and other markers were worrying. When I arrived at hospital I had my blood taken again which showed my haemoglobin had dropped to 5.

I was then taken for a CT scan which showed a large mass on my abdominal wall. I received 6 units of blood that night then taken into theatre in the morning as they were unsure what this mass was. During the operation I had it removed along with part of my bowel. A few days later I was rushed back into theatre for an emergency operation as the join on my bowel had burst so I had a stoma formed. The pathology from the first operation was not back yet but the consultant was almost sure it was crohns disease. I was assured it wouldn't be cancer as I am 'too young'(19) but even if it was I was told not to worry as it had been removed. Around a week later the pathology came back and turned out it was a cancerous tumour so I had to go for another operation to ensure it had all been removed, despite previously being told otherwise, and too clear the margins.

Since then I have had to have fertility treatment and my eggs frozen before 6 months of chemotherapy. I also have to return for another operation to have my stoma reversed.

I feel this whole situation could have been avoided if I were taken seriously in the first place and stopped being told 'Im too young'. The fact that the tumour was missed on my colonoscopy also worries me.

This has caused a lot of distress, pain and misery for both myself and my family. It has also wasted a lot of NHS time, money and resources.

Despite my horrible experience it has to be said my aftercare was far better.

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Response from Rosemary Lyness, Executive Clinical Director, NHS Lanarkshire

picture of Rosemary Lyness

Dear survivor123,

I cannot begin to imagine how distressing this has been for you and your family. I am very sorry for the additonal pain and worry this has caused. In order to find out more about what happened and if you area agreeable, I would find it helpful if you would contact Gillian Corbett the Head of Nursing at Wishaw and also our nursing lead for cancer services. Gillian works very closely with senior medical staff, so we can also arrange for further discussion about your experience with the wider team.

I am pleased that your follow up care has been good, I appreciate that you still have more treatment ahead of you - I wish you well and hope that this all goes to plan.

If you feel able to speak to Gillian she is contactable on 01698-366002. if you are having treatment on the site, I know Gillian will be very happy to come and see you personally.

Kindest Regards


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