"Missed diagnosis of a fracture"

About: Altrincham General Hospital

I am shocked at the incorrect and potentially harmful advice given to my daughter when presenting a suspected fracture to the scafoid (wrist). X-Rays were inconclusive (apparently common with these breaks) so she was given a splint to wear and was told to remove it in the evenings and flex her wrist, then come back in 7-10 days if still in pain. The nurse said she would be able to continue with her sports activities as long as they did not need the use of her hands (e.g. netball). Nine days later, X-Rays were again inconclusive but because specific movements were painful she was referred to the orthopaedic clinic at Trafford General a week later. When there (before X-Rays were taken for a third time) the consultant pressed points on her wrist and was confident that it was broken. He said she should have been put in a cast at the initial assessment as unsupported scafoid injuries can lead to long term problems! Her scafoid was chipped and she is now in a cast for four weeks; she has been told to avoid all sports activities in case of injury to her other wrist. At the time I was impressed with the service my daughter received but having heard how wrong the advice has been I feel I ought to write about this. Finally, worryingly, my friend’s son has been to Altrincham Minor Injuries with two separate breaks, on two different occasions, and these were both missed. She wrote to complain after the second incident but did not receive a reply. I will never return to Altrincham Minor Injuries with a suspected fracture.

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Responses

Response from Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

We are very sorry to receive your comments and concerns via the Patient Opinion website about your daughter’s experience at Altrincham Minor Injuries Unit in March 2014.

It is very difficult to respond to the specific concerns you have raised as we do not have your daughters details. We take all issues surrounding patient care very seriously and would very much like to hear from you directly about this in order to undertake a thorough and comprehensive investigation.

If you contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service on 0161 276 8686 or by e-mailing pals@cmft.nhs.uk they will be happy to discuss this with you. Alternatively, you can the contact the Urgent Care Centre Manager at Trafford Hospital, who will be happy to discuss your daughter’s experience with you.

The contact details for Clare Kirrane, Urgent Care Centre Manager are 0161 746 2699. We do hope your daughter is coping with the cast and wish her well with her recovery.

The Patient Experience Team

Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Response from Altrincham General Hospital

We are very sorry to receive your comments and concerns via the NHS Choices / Patient Opinion website about your daughter’s experience at Altrincham Minor Injuries Unit in March 2014. It is very difficult to respond to the specific concerns you have raised as we do not have your daughters details. We take all issues surrounding patient care very seriously and would very much like to hear from you directly about this in order to undertake a thorough and comprehensive investigation. If you contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service on 0161 276 8686 or by e-mailing pals@cmft.nhs.uk they will be happy to discuss this with you. Alternatively, you can the contact the Urgent Care Centre Manager at Trafford Hospital, who will be happy to discuss your daughter’s experience with you. The contact details for Clare Kirrane, Urgent Care Centre Manager are 0161 746 2699. We do hope your daughter is coping with the cast and wish her well with her recovery. The Patient Experience Team Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

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