"Concern over wound closure and lack of graft"

About: London Ambulance Service NHS Trust Northwick Park Hospital

(as the patient),

I was rushed to Northwick Park Hospital recently after a wall collapsed on me. It took 5 fire engines, 3 ambulances and 2 police cars to recover me from the accident site so for an hour I lay on the first floor holding my leg and looking at the fist sized open wound before I made it to the hospital.

I was operated on and the wound was cleaned and dressed and the following morning the surgeon who performed the cleaning came to visit me. I was told it was just a flesh wound and I would make a full recovery once the wound was closed. They told me that the next stage would be to close to wound. I was told that when they pulled the skin together if there was any shrinkage or swelling whereby the seams on the wound did not meet i.e. if there was a gap then I would need a skin graft and I would be sent on to the Royal Free plastics who would graft from my bum in order to close.

A few days later I was sent to theatre assuming that the same surgeon was going to perform the procedure or finding that a graft was needed not perform.

To my horror I awoke in the recovery room screaming and wailing, my temperature was high, I had a local in the wound area and it felt like a hot poker had been placed along my groin. The pain was unbearable. A nurse came over to see what was happening and touched my thigh which instantly became inflamed, turned purple and became so painful I was asking to please cut off the leg.

The nurses called for the surgeon who came to see me. Realising that I was in fact in agony they stuck a scalpel in the stitches they gave me and cut one by one. One nurse asked "doctor should we not give him a local?". She was told not to as they reopened all the work he had just done.

To add I was never returned to theatre, this was performed in the recovery area surrounded by nurses, patients and other staff. There were patients praying for me across the room. The swelling and pain were instantly reduced once they reopened me however it also got infected, the wound is now bigger and nerves have been damaged in the process. I had been in hospital 4 days at this point.

On day 5 when it came time to urinate another issue was highlighted... I could not, the sensation was there to pee but it would not release resulting in everything in that area swelling and turning purple, 2 nurses carried me to a commode holding me under each arm as I was too weak to hold myself up, my heart rate was increasing along with my breathing and temp. After about 30 minutes of screaming and taps running I eventually released and in line also did the swelling... that was horrific and the trauma of the wall falling has been replaced by nightmares of waking up in recovery and trying to wee.

So far the flesh wound which was nice and pink is now black and looks to be rotting. My bandage has only been changed 3 times since arrival and I am in fact worse off the when I first arrived. It is now 9 days later and I still sit here with an open rotting wound and no definite day for transfer. I have made little videos and taken many pictures along the way to document all this.

I have made a formal complaint about my doctor, mainly because when I called them back to explain what happened they told me while smirking that it was just our bad luck. Not once did they try to reassure me or console me, just took what I felt was a defensive line.

I want people to know what has happened here. When I close my eyes now I have nightmares and cold sweats, I can see the recovery room and the doctor standing over me with a scalpel. It truly has been the most traumatic 9 days of my life... and it’s not over yet. I have more info and pictures to prove neglect and lack of due care.

The wound should never have been stitched. I hope you will take this seriously as I am not sure how I will cope if this is all in vain.

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