"Abscess on appendix"

About: Alnwick Infirmary / General surgery Wansbeck Hospital / General surgery

(as a parent/guardian),

Hi my son was taken to A & E one Monday evening Tuesday morning just after midnight. He was diagnosed with gastritis, told it was the cause of drink, 16 years old who had 2 cans of larger 3 nights previous.

I doubted this diagnosis and blamed ibuprofen. suffering pain for 2 days, we returned to A &E where he was checked by another doctor, told to stop the ibuprofen and buy gaviscon at the chemists.

2 days passed my son in constant pain with a 24 hour bout of excessive diarrhoea. I phoned nhs helpline and advised to call ambulance or see doctor. He saw a doctor who told us to go to A&E as he had blood in urine. 4 hours later he was discharged from A&E with some codeine. They checked heart and kidneys. No antibiotics were given even though he had infection shown in blood. We were asked to return3 days later to see consultant.

Monday he was diagnosed as having abscess on his appendix. Put straight on morphine given antibiotics. 7 days too late. He was kept I hospital 5 days. We returned 3 days later for a blood check as sepsis was still in blood. I asked if we could return for a check-up and told if you like.

We returned for checkup however my son still had blood in urine. He had never been treated for this infection. He was then given another course of different antibiotics. No operation as to date has been made.

We hope this is a lesson learnt. Doctors should ask more about previous history. 4 doctors saw my son before a consultant recognised the level of pain was not that of gastritis. Doctor in alnwick said why are you shouting I haven't touched you yet. He had been lying on floor in casualty. Can't believe this happened in the last 3 weeks.

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Response from Annie Laverty, Director of Patient Experience, Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

picture of Annie Laverty

Dear Madam,

Can I begin by saying how sorry I am that you son has had this experience. I extremely disappointed and very saddened that his care resulted in him continuing to experience a great deal of pain after a number of visits to both hospitals.

I agree we have much to learn from this and I would really like to be in a position to respond to you in a more personalised way but the anonymity of your feedback makes it difficult for me to do this. I would be really grateful if you could get in touch. You can contact me at annie.laverty@nhct.nhs.uk

Thanks so much for bringing this to our attention,


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Response from Wansbeck Hospital

Dear Sir / Madam, Thanks for your feedback. It feels like we have a number of things to learn from what you have shared with us - many thanks for giving us the opportunity to do this. I would be very grateful if you would get in touch with us directly so that the clinical team in emergency care can review your son's records and understand what happened as well as learn from any mistakes made. I am deeply sorry that we didn't provide your son with an accurate diagnosis and the care he needed first time around. I am also sorry that he has been in considerable pain throughout. Please do get in touch and help us to address all the issues raised in your review. I am currently on holiday and so would be grateful if you would get in touch with Joanne. Mackintosh@nhct.nhs.uk in my absence. With best wishes, Annie

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