"Elective Open AAA Repair"

About: Pilgrim Hospital

I was on the monitoring programme for 3 years and then it became time to act. Very short notice of the operation day, now 2 weeks ago, which I was thankful for as so busy doing all the required tests. Looked at these as an MOT which reinforced the confidence, I felt in my very scared mind, that they are total professionals who were looking after me. The very understanding Pre-Op Assessment Sister took time to discuss things, answer questions, explained all the tubes and wires that would be attached to me and why. Something that needs passing on to your visitors. Then it was an early start for the operation, met all the surgical team and soon it was off on a trolley with a very friendly chatty porter. When I woke up, my first memory was seeing all the surgical team around me smiling and telling me I was OK. The ITU staff soon made me comfortable and for the next 48hrs they looked after me so very well. It is difficult to explain my feelings about the ITU staff and the care they provided, so thank you seems not to be good enough. Once stable I was taken to Ward 5B, which going from 1.1 care in the ITU at first takes a bit of getting used too. That said, the care they gave me was outstanding. Nothing was too much trouble for them and they are always busy. When you need them they are there for you and it does not matter what is wrong or happened, they deal with it in a calm and caring manner. However, you soon learn, maybe after some gentle hints, to start doing things for yourself. Also, the Physiotherapy staff will visit you often to encourage mobility and they are exceptional. The domestic staff on Ward 5B were also helpful and understanding and the quality of the catering was good in my opinion. I left Pilgrim six days in and am still, as expected, often tired and am taking each day as it comes. If you are on the AAA monitoring programme or soon to operated on, I wish you well. But without doubt you are, from my experience, in the hands of complete professionals. Our community nurse has now visited and removed the large number of staples and once again excellent service.

Story from NHS Choices

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