"This procedure was the worst pain imaginable"

About: Frimley Park Hospital / Gynaecology

(as the patient),

I was sent to Frimley Park hospital to have some polyps removed. It was, for some unknown reason, the first time I had gone to hospital without being overly worried about the procedure (which is very unusual for me! ).

I sauntered in, with no real clue as to what was about to happen. The first worrying sign was the presence of 3 people in the room, and no explanation as to who they were. The second was the metal bucket-contraption at the side of the bed! I remember thinking, 'what on earth had I agreed to? ' It looked like something from a backstreet abortion clinic.

I was told that I would be 'a little uncomfortable' afterwards.

That was the understatement of the year. The pain was unbearable.

I could hardly keep myself from screaming, and I felt very close to passing out. Reluctantly, and with a 'tut', the doctor ceased the procedure, and told me that I would 'have to have it under anaesthetic'. They seemed most put out. I was given no aftercare whatsoever. In my opinion, possibly because I was just a nuisance!

I was bundled unceremoniously out of the room, crying uncontrollably. I drove home on my own, hardly able to see where I was going, through the tears of agony. How I got home in one piece I'll never know.

I lay on the sofa for hours, sobbing, until the pain eventually disappeared.

It was far, far worse that the 2 childbirth experiences I'd had.

My daughter-in-law was, at the time, a student midwife, and was insistent that it should not have been done without anaesthetic.

Like many others on here, I assumed that it was my fault at being unable to bear the pain! (I have been told my various medical people that people with ginger hair have a proven lower pain threshold - I don't know if this is true, but it's what I used to explain the distress I felt. If this is true, then this too should be taken into account. )

I had the procedure under anaesthetic a while later- a far better experience!

A few weeks later I bumped into a friend I’d not seen for years. She told me that she was going into Frimley Park the next week for a’minor op’, and that she felt a ‘wimp’ for having elected to go under anaesthetic. (at least she was given the choice! ) When I asked if it was the removal of a polyp, startled, she replied yes! I had no hesitation in assuring her that, without doubt, she had done the right thing.

This procedure was the worst pain imaginable, and should not be done without an anaesthetic....ever, in my view! !

1. This should not be done without anaesthetic,

2. The aftercare is important; driving home in that much pain could have been disastrous.

3. I felt that I was treated as a 'number' not a person.

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Response from Claire Marshall, Head of Patient Involvement, Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust

picture of Claire Marshall

Dear Squirrell

Thank you for taking the time to leave your feedback. I am very sorry for your poor experience, and for the pain and distress caused. In order for us to be able to learn more and ensure this doesn't happen for other patients I would be grateful if you could share your details and story with our Patient Advice and Liaison Service. You can email them on palsfrimleypark@fhft.nhs.uk.

I will pass your feedback onto the nurse leading on this area who will share your feedback with the rest of the team at the next Clinical Governance meeting.

Thank you for taking the time to share it and I hope you will work with us to make changes for others.

Kind Regards

Claire Marshall

Head of Patient Experience

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