"Dangerously poor"

About: University College Hospital

I had several bad and dangerous experiences while under the care of the EPU. Staff failed to keep proper notes and inform me of risk associated with my treatment, following SOPs, act in a timely manner, treated me like an idiot and performed substandard surgery which they failed to take responsibility for. Due to bleeding I had to have an early scan, the ultrasound tech / dr who performed the scan said I had "low fluid", saw a heart beat but no yolk sac but said not to worry because the yolk sac might be hiding. Given the relative size of the yolk sac and embryo at this stage this is a ludicrous statement. The tech who discharged me (no follow up) did not even record the observations of "low fluid" and no yolk sac. A week later, I knew something was wrong when my felling of elation (induced by rising hCG levels) disappeared. I suffered sharp pains and went to the EPU. The staff on the desk refused to let me see a doctor until I lied and said I had had extensive bleeding. At this point the women on the desk told me to show her my pad!!!! Outrageous. The dr carrying out the ultra sound diagnosed a miscarriage. She tried to find a second person to confirm her diagnosis (I was told this was standard practice) but she couldn't find anyone, so apparently standard procedures were not followed. I was told my only options were a ERPC or to wait for a natural miscarriage. I was not given the option of a chemically induced miscarriage which would have been my preferred option. I was never told there was a risk of Asherman's syndrome from an ERPC. The literature I was given did not include this information either. The surgeon reported a perfectly performed ERPC, and I was discharged with out a follow up appointment. This is ridiculous, every surgical patient should receive a follow up. I didn't get my next period for 15 weeks despite getting cramps and PMS symptoms monthly. I went to the EPU to report this and ask for help, but was told I wasn't their problem as I had been discharged. I eventually found out from a different hospital that the doctor that performed my ERPC had damaged my uterus and caused scaring that caused two more miscarriages and risked making me permanently infertile. So despite their surgical team causing a problem and me reporting it, they refused to take responsibility and correct it. The EPU refusing to refer me for a follow up become even more serious when I found out that at the time I went to them for help, they had a suspected diagnosis of a partial molar (cancerous) pregnancy for me (just 1 week post ERPC). I had not received this diagnosis. A key symptom in these case is continuing hCG production preventing periods from returning. A critical clinical indicator is hCG post ERPC. However, I was not checked because it took more than 2 months for the EPU to contact me with their finding and refer me to the molar pregnancy monitoring service. This was a very very dangerous error.

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Response from University College Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to feed back to us. We are very sorry to hear about your experiences at the Early Pregnancy Unit at UCLH. We would be grateful if you could contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) via pals@uclh.nhs.uk or by calling 020 3447 3042 so that we can look into this.

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