"Delay in getting an MRI scan"

About: Hairmyres Hospital / Trauma & orthopaedics

(as the patient),

I was sent to A&E due to leg weakness and bladder issues by my GP on a Friday late afternoon. This was after my GP having to fight with orthopaedic doctors on the phone for me to be seen with suspected Cauda Equina Syndrome.

I was admitted that night however the scanning equipment doesn't get used from 5pm on a Friday until 9am Monday. So I was admitted until I could get an MRI. Over the weekend I was moved wards in several occasions so on the Monday no one came to take me for my scan..

Apparently they couldn't find me as I had moved ward.. So Tuesday I finally had my scan where it showed my disc bulging at L4/L5/S1. I was sent immediately to the Douthern General and operated on quickly.

The point being in now left with permanent weakness due to a delay in getting an MRI. Why do hospitals still work antequated hours.. I should have been operated on within 48 hours maximum to avoid permanent damage.. Surely keeping these scanning machines open will be cheaper than having to pay for care for me now?

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Response from Susan Friel, Chief of Nursing Services, Hairmyres Hospital, NHS Lanarkshire

picture of Susan Friel

Dear Mustang,

I was disappointed to read of your experience whilst in Hairmyres.

We try not to move patients between wards unnecessarily, but sometimes have to so that we can take care of patients being admitted to hospital as urgent and emergency cases. We only do this when patients are well enough and stable.

As you rightly point out, MRI scanning is not done over the weekend at Hairmyres. However, we do have guidelines and arrangements in place for urgent MRI scans to be done at the Southern General. I’m dismayed that you were told you didn’t have an MRI on the Monday because staff couldn’t find you and I would want to investigate this as a matter of urgency as this should not have happened.

I’m obviously unable to go into your case in this forum but I would be happy to meet with you to go through some of the points you have raised.

If you would like to meet to discuss your concerns please contact Michelle from our Patient Affairs Department on: Tel No: 01355 585325

Kind regards


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