"Woke up during surgery"

About: Blackpool Victoria Hospital / Trauma and orthopaedics

(as the patient),

I have suffered with chronic rheumatoid arthritis since age 2 years old, so hospital is an everyday thing for me. A few years ago I went for an arthroscopy on my knee. I went for meetings before for MRSA checks and to discuss Anaethsetic I was told because of neck problems I would have an epidural.

On the day of surgery I attended the hospital at 10am ish and instead of being directed to a bed I was put in a room that felt to me like a broom cupboard at the end of the ward, one by one loads of men joined me all needing knee operations. We sat their all day apart from the Surgeon coming to see us, I mentioned I had not spoken to the anethatist and he said I would soon. I was scared as I have problems always with my neck.

Later we had a visit from the surgeons understudy. They came, asked us all to roll up trousers on the knee that was being operated on and drew an arrow with a black felt tip pen. I waited til approx 6.30pm walked into theatre to be told I would be having a tube down my throat, explained I was expecting epidural but the member of staff shrugged it off, said it would take too long and they put the tube down my throat.

I awoke to see them standing over me with hat and coat on, the operation never went ahead as I woke up during surgery, my leg was in agony, as the drs had manouvered it. Luckily they had not cut into it, the understudy walked away and I was sent home an hour or so later.

I complained to the hospital, but was not happy with the response.

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Response from Paul Jebb, Assistant Director of Nursing (patient experience), Clinical Governance, Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

picture of Paul Jebb

I am sorry to hear that you were not happy with your visit to Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to have an arthroscopy.

I would like to assure you that over the last 2 years and especially the last 6 months, patients who are admitted for surgical procedures are cared for in a different way. The new Surgical Centre has provided patients with a first class accommodation whilst they are prepared for their surgery. Patients admission is staggered to ensure they are not admitted too early for their surgery.

There is single sex accommodation so that Men and Women have separate waiting rooms and in addition there are dedicated rooms where privacy and dignity for our patients can be maintained. There are also comfortable chairs for patients to wait for their operation. For all of our surgical patients a thorough pre operative assessment is carried out which allows for discussion and consent regarding the type of anaesthetic that will be given.

I am unable to provide a more in depth response regarding the problems you encountered when waking up during the operation and why this occurred. If you would like to forward your name to the PALS Department on 01253 655588, we would be happy to investigate your concerns further.

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Update posted by luckybug (the patient)

I came to Blackpool Vic for a thorough pre op assesment a week or two before I was admitted, and was told due to my neck problems I would be having an epidural.

I was treated like any fit healthy person with a football injury not a chronically disabled person with many other problems.

Dr Javid also was not happy over the way his patients were treated and wrote a letter of complaint.