"Extremely traumatic experience"
About: Chelsea & Westminster Hospital Chelsea & Westminster Hospital London SW10 9NH
My daughter was delivered via emergency c section in January 2013 due to severe preeclampsia and my experience was truley horrifying. I was in and out of the hospital for 2 weeks prior to our daughters delivery and no 2 consultants could agree whether or not I had preeclampsia despite suffering from all the classic symptoms including high blood pressure, epigastric pain, abnormal liver function and seeing flashing lights. My c section was managed brilliantly by an extremely professional team but afterwards my care was horrendous. In my second day in high dependency I was advised by a consultant that my condition wasn't improving as expected and he was quite concerned. He then promptly disappeared leaving me to wonder how I was going to recover and what was happening to me. The nurse in the high dependency unit also thought it was funny to suggest I ask a doctor if I was going to die when I was genuinely terrified that I wouldn't make it home to begin a new life with my daughter. I was left severely anaemic and unable to get out of bed without fainting. Again the nurses in high dependency suggested that I was being pathetic and that I should just get out of bed and put some makeup on to make myself feel better. My catheter was removed before I was mobile and I couldn't stand up to visit the bathroom alone. I was then left by my bed, covered in blood waiting for someone to help me for about 20 minutes. I've never felt so helpless and upset. To make things worse I even over heard the 2 nurses whispering during their handover period one afternoon that I was the "problem" on the ward and needed to be moved out. This was so distressing as I was relying on them to help me and genuinely was desperate to recover and see my baby. It was only after really pushing the doctors to explore why I felt so unwell that I was, on request, given 2 blood transfusions after which I felt well enough to be transferred to the postnatal ward. By this point I was desperate to be moved away from the awful nurses who had joked about my condition and made me feel so uncomfortable. When I was ready to go home it took a day to be discharged. My discharge note didn't even contain my prescription details. The prescription I was given was incorrect and I had to tell the nurse that I had in fact been taking a lower dosage of one of the medications while I was in hospital. I've now received a copy of my antenatal notes and my daughters gestation is even wrong on one of the records. If you're having a straight forward birth then I'm sure the chelsea and westminster is fine but if you're high risk, have an emergency or complex case I really feel you're taking your life in your own hands.