"Because I’m alone and independent, I’m left to it."
About: Douglas Macmillan Hospice Douglas Macmillan Hospice Stoke-on-trent ST3 3NZ http://www.dmhospice.org.uk/ Royal Stoke University Hospital Royal Stoke University Hospital Stoke-on-Trent ST4 6QG The Christie The Christie Manchester M20 4BX
Posted by Keen389 (as ),
I was diagnosed with terminal cancer 5 years ago and should say that I have suffered from more stress through the lack of care and compassion from the medical profession than from the cancer.
I was under treatment at the University Hospital of North Staffordshire when I was told about the cancer I was on my own as I had no family near me. No one called me afterwards to see how I was, whether I needed any help or support nor did anyone come to see me. Although it was a shock I was determined to carry on living in the way I had.
Because the cancer I have is rare I did some research and spoke to someone from the NET Patient Foundation who recommended that I contact a specialist in this particular cancer at Christies Hospital in Manchester. Co-incidentally I had already contacted Christies and was subsequently seen by their consultant. Sometime after receiving treatment from his clinic I was then offered monthly injections, however I had severe side effects from the very first one and returned to the clinic to let them know. Although I was not seen by the consultant on this occasion one of his doctors did speak to him for advice and I was informed I would not be given this treatment again due to the extreme reaction. I was then sent home and have not heard from them since – this was a couple of years ago.
Up until April 2014 I was visited by palliative care nurses from the Douglas Macmillan Hospice but have not heard from the hospice since then. On that last visit the nurse asked: How long have we been coming to see you now? It’s been quite a while. It made me feel that I’d been hanging on too long, that I should not be here. I didn’t say anything and as she was leaving she said she would call me the following week to make an appointment for the following month. I have not heard from the hospice since then – no calls or visits. I have a dog and take him out for a walk every day, their view was that if I could take the dog for a walk I did not need the nurses.
I feel that if I had been a weaker, more demanding person or had family around me I would have got more help but because I’m alone and independent I’m left to it.