"A very positive experience with shoulder surgery..."
About: University College Hospital University College Hospital London NW1 2BU
Posted by GeoffB33
What I liked
I went to UCH for treatment of a longstanding shoulder injury that had caused it to dislocate more than two dozen times in the past 12 years or so. I was very fearful of surgery and had been avoiding it for some time. The surgeons and doctors in the orthopaedics clinic were very patient with me and answered all my questions (even though I'm sure they had heard them all many times before). I actually ended up going into surgery twice, and both times I found the day surgery staff to be friendly and helpful. The doctors, once again, were great. Surgery always carries risks, but mine went smoothly.
I am now nearly fully recovered, thanks in large part to the physiotherapy staff who were every bit as good as the doctors. Moreover, it looks very likely that the surgery has solved the problem.
What could be improved
Communication with doctors at UCH is great when you're standing in front of them, but getting them (or anyone) on the phone is another matter. During my long recovery I had a few questions that went unasnwered and one family emergency that required immediate medical advice on whether I could travel. I found it extremely difficult to reach anyone and ended up having to walk in and wait in the clinic for someone to talk to me. The doctor was very helpful when they did see me, but it was clear that messages just weren't getting through.
UCH also bungled my referral from my GP, and it took many months to get my initial appointment. I hope that the hospital can improve its administration so that communication is easier and smoother for patients.
What matters at the end of the day are the doctors and staff. I have great confidence in everyone at the fracture clinic, and I'd really recommend the clinic to anyone looking for expertise in these areas.