"It was the worst experience at my age of 72...."
Posted by Melanie Prendiville
I was referred by my kind GP to the Private Clinic used by the NHS for an opinion because I was having pain in my right foot as a Type2 Diabetic. I had to travel 18miles to get to the Woodland hospital - I am a very fit woman of 72years - never had alcohol or smoked and very healthy eater. I received a letter to see a Spinal Surgeon. I was a bit concerned because I did not have back problems ever - only Bladder and Fibroids in the Womb for which I had a Hysterectomy at 31years. I met the consultant at my 3.30 appointment in February and they were not like the NHS Consultants I had been treated by in the London Hospitals. This consultant was more like a Business Executive, hardly sat down in the Consultation room and they produced a MRI Scan of my back and Spine which was done at the Northampton Hospital in December 2014. They did not ask me to get on the Examination Bed - I was in the chair and they waved the Scan Disc in the Air and said "I am a Spinal Surgeon - with a lot of experience and looking at you Scan - you need Surgery as soon as possible or you won't be walking in 3months" I was shocked and frightened and told him that most of my pan was in my lower abdomen - They replied it was caused by the disc pressing on the nerve in my lower back vertebrae. He said that I would be ok after 24 hours and I was assured that everything would be OK. I was worried about this sudden Illness diagnosed but, the consultant told me about their Experience and Surgical background I trusted them to stop the pain which was not a big problem, if it was Spinal Surgery I needed to stop the pain in my lower abdomen and passing Urine all night and day. I got a letter telling me that my Surgery was on the 18th April 2015 - at 7am. it was a Saturday and I could not get transport at 6am. A kind Church helper said she would pick me up at 6.15am and drop me at the Woodland Hospital. The Hospital then cancelled the Surgery and gave me Saturday the 24th April 2015 at 7am. I had to re-organise my travel etc. I then had a phone call from the consultant's Secretary on the 22nd April cancelling that appointment and offered me surgery from the consultant's junior. I refused and got an appointment for Saturday 2nd May at 7am with the consultant. I got there at 6.45am and was taken straight to the room to change into a gown and told to get on the bed by the Nurse. I was Anaesthetised immediately and woke up about 3pm in a small room with Oxygen and pressure tubes in my nose and wrist. I asked for water because I was vomiting and needed a bowl and was blanking out - I was told by the nurse that I was discharged to go home on Sunday Morning I could not move - the pain in my back - 30 metal pins and a long Scar. The nurses never washed their hands - or used surgical gloves when they were taking readings and touching the dressing on my Spine. There was no bowl in the room and I was in the middle away from the light switches and emergency bell - I was shouted at by the Nurses to go home - I was discharged..