"Subluxation vs Ganglion - when the Dr's don't..."

About: Airedale General Hospital

After visiting my Doctor for severe pain in my wrist shooting up to my elbow and into my hand, inability to grip and an obvious protruding lump on the back of my hand, I was referred to A&E for Xrays on the 20th December. These didn't show anything, but the pain was very bad and after a follow up call to the doctor on the 23rd December, was asked to go to A&E for further xrays. At this point A&E diagnosed a suspected Scaphoid Fracture and I was given a neoprene wrist brace with thumb splint. I was referred to the trauma clinic for an appointment on the 30th December. During the Christmas period I contacted the hospital as I was in a lot of pain, and concerned that because the wrist brace wasn't a very good fit, and because my wrist was very painful I contacted the PALS at the hospital for advice who advised that all was ok. At the appointment on the 30th December I took information with me about my symptoms and the activities and pain I was experiencing and told the Doctor about it. He said I probably had a ganglion but was going to refer me to the Fracture Clinic. He advised I hadn't got a scaphoid fracture so the wrist brace with thumb splint wasn't required but suggested I continued with a wrist brace to support my wrist given the pain I was in. I then visited the plaster room, where I was "fitted" with the brace, although I didn't fit and was too big and at no time was I asked if it was comfortable. I was upset but told that if I wanted anything different I had to go back to the doctor. I was only in there for about 2 minutes! I then went back to A&E to book my fracture clinic appointment for the 2nd January. It was at this point our previous communication happened. At my appointment on the 2nd January at the Fracture Clinic I was told there wasn't anything wrong other than then ganglion, despite my concerns about the pain, lack of movement or grip in my wrist or that the lump wasn't a usual ganglion shape. I was told it would go away with rest, and that as the wrist brace was so uncomfortable not to use it. Despite being upset and concerned that something was wrong, I left the hospital. On Wednesday 22nd January I finally had had enough and went to see a physio. They examined my wrist and diagnosed a subluxation of my capitate bone in my left wrist which they have treated to realign the bone although there is quite a lot of ligament damage. I will need further treatment to address the ligament damage and the Physio has suggested a CT/MRI scan to better understand the level of damage. In the meantime, I now need to had a splint on my wrist for up to 4 weeks to enable to ligament to heal and prevent further subluxation of the bone during the healing process. A&E itself was very good, but I feel the Fracture & Trauma Clinic Doctors were very dismissive and wouldn't really listen to me and quick to diagnose a ganglion, without looking at my other symptoms - as a result, my recovery is going to take longer.

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Response from Airedale General Hospital

You have said A&E was very good but have described a poor experience which we are concerned to read. We would very much like to discuss this with you and urge you to ring our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) team on 01535 294019. It is appreciated you have contacted them once before and were not satisfied with the response you received, but we want you to be assured they will ensure your contact details are passed directly to a senior manager.

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