"My experience having a septoplasty operation"

About: Royal Cornwall Hospital (Treliske) / Ear, Nose and Throat

(as the patient),

I saw a consultant regarding my breathing problems and he agreed I needed a septoplasty and booked me in for the operation at Treliske.   On the day of the operation I met a different surgeon who I was told was going to do the operation - who said it was straightforward and never mentioned he could operate and make it worse.    

About a week after the operation I was in immense pain and couldn't breathe through my nose at all or smell anything.   I tried ringing the surgeon's secretary to get an appointment and was told there wasn't any availability until my 2 month follow up appointment and I'd have to wait til then.   I spoke to my GP who also wrote to the surgeon's office but still I couldn't get an earlier appointment. I knew something was wrong as I was in so much pain but no-one would see me.   All I could get was painkillers from   my GP.   This was August 2019 well before Covid so the delay was nothing to do with that.  

When I did eventually see my surgeon at the 2 month follow up appointment they agreed the operation had not been a success and to come back in another 4 months when healing had occurred to discuss options.   Due to cancelled appointments and then Covid that second follow up appointment didn't happen until October 2020.   At the appointment in October I was first examined by a different doctor who confirmed my septoplasty hadn't been successful.   Then my surgeon came in the room and told off the doctor in front me for doing something wrong and then proceeded to roughly examine my nose with the camera - it was very painful but they continued.  

The surgeon was extremely dismissive of my concerns and said if I wanted it corrected it would now be a massive 2 - 3 hour operation, couldn't guarantee success and would probably result in a cosmetically worse looking nose.   I said I wasn't sure I could go through another operation and they said to wear a steri strip across my nose.  

I have decided I can't face another operation, but I am now left with much worse breathing than before and a continual post nasal drip that definitely wasn't there prior to the operation. I just wanted to write this down somewhere in the hope that if anyone is considering a septoplasty, make sure you go into it knowing you could be worse off - because my surgeon didn't tell me that!   It just seems to me that when a surgeon doesn't have a good outcome they act like they're very keen to get rid of you.  


Response from Maria Lane, Governance and Audit Administrator for Surgery, Specialist Surgery, Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust last week
Maria Lane
Governance and Audit Administrator for Surgery, Specialist Surgery,
Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust
Submitted on 17/11/2020 at 14:40
Published on Care Opinion at 15:08

Dear Mel662020

Thank you for taking the time to post your comments about your experience and it was clear from reading your comments that you have experienced a difficult time.

I have fed back your comments to the Service Manager for ENT, Mr Peter Gray, who would like to discuss your experience with you, either via phone or a virtual meeting, to see if there are any areas of learning and/or if there is anything further we can do to help you. If you would like to take this offer up Mr Gray can be contacted on pete.gray@nhs.net and we can arrange a mutually convenient time to talk to you.

I will ensure that your comments and feedback are passed onto the team leaders so they can share it with their teams and I am sorry that your operation did not go as expected.

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