"Colonoscopy was horrendous"

About: The Queen Elizabeth Hospital / Gastroenterology

(as the patient),

I am no stranger to unpleasant, upsetting, invasive etc. procedures, and I knew this was not going to be fun. The gastroscopy wasn't great but the colonscopy in October 12 was horrendous. Very painful and again this is an area I'm usually quite stoic about.

I don't think the drug worked for me as I understand its main benefit is amnesia so preventing you remembering, therefore resulting in no trauma.

Not! 'though I know that happens. What I found difficult is that the staff just seemed too blase about it; I suppose they figured I wouldn't remember so wth. That's how it seemed to me, anyhow. They were not particularly sympathetic and no one seemed to want to say a word to me in after care.

I've nursed myself so I do get the other side of the story but if someone had had this experience under my care I would have been very concerned for their distress.

I wonder how many staff in this unit have had a colonoscopy? ! I also feel they are over relying on that most people do not remember it. I feel they need to remember that some people DO remember and find it very difficult.

I kept apologizing too for making such a fuss and nobody really bothered to respond to that.

Fair enough they did give me Entenox too which helped a little and they did tell me in informed consent process that some people do find it very painful.

But overall I felt they could have demonstrated more sympathy.

I know it's tough for staff, I really do. I am the one who is usually defending NHS staff when people moan. But over a year later I still have upsetting memories of this.

Could do better and need to be reminded that some patients do not forget their experience!

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Response from The Queen Elizabeth Hospital Kings Lynn NHS Foundation Trust

I was extremely concerned to read about your recent experience whilst undergoing this investigation. Please could I ask that you ring me urgently on 01553 613613 extension and bleep 3582 so that I can speak to you in person about this incident, in order for this this matter to be investigated promptly and the situation addressed.

Val Newton

Deputy director of Nursing

Update posted by buddhiblu (the patient)

I am in the process of discussions with the deputy director of nursing and relevant staffabout this incident and already feeling better about it!

I would very much like to stress that; having to go this hospital quite a lot, this is the ONLY time I have ever been less than happy. I am surprised that the QE is having problems at the moment, in fact.

I have both worked in and been treated by quite a number of hospitals over the past 30+ years and a few of them have been terrible in many ways.

I do not want to put people off the QE, compared to some I think they are good.

ALSO the majority of patients do not remember their colonoscopy at all!

I think maybe generally it is worth staff in these units perhaps remembering that the occasional patient will have a bad time, though. So perhaps there's a way for the NHS to be able to provide a wider range of drug alternatives/backups for the unfortunate few who do not respond well to the usual medications?

Will post again on final outcome.

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