"Emergency A&E and Early Pregnancy Ward"

About: Royal Hallamshire Hospital / Gynaecology

(as the patient),

Earlier this week I experienced a sharp stabbing pain in my abdomen. I am currently 6 weeks pregnant with my first child and have not yet had any communication with a midwife or a doctor as when I called my GP when I found out I was advised this wasn't necessary until 8 weeks. However the stabbing pain would not go away so I called NHS111 and they advised to go to A&E.

I arrived at A&E at 10am and was initially seen in triage at around 10: 30am. The nurse was very understanding and took my blood pressure and advised me to take a seat and someone should call me in around an hour. Unfortunately I think quite a few urgent cases came in via ambulance and the minor case doctors were completely rushed off their feet. Almost 4 hours later the doctors called my name and I was taken into the consultation area.

She asked me questions and felt my stomach and asked me to provide a urine sample so she could do a pregnancy test. She then stated that she wanted to rule out an ectopic pregnancy so wanted to take a blood test. The doctor decided to insert a cannula to extract the blood but unfortunately didn't really explain why and as I have never had one before didn't ask any questions. When she couldnt actually get any blood she advised that she would seek help from someone else to do so and arrange for an ambulance to take me to Hallamshire Hosp to perform a scan. She then came back around 15 minutes later advised that I was to wait in CDU for my ambulance - no further word around blood tests.

After I had been transferred to CDU I started to feel very ill and faint (due to the cannula I believe as I'm not great with needles) and was moved to a little room to wait. The ambulance staff arrived around half an hour later and they were absolute diamonds. They also advised of information on my notes that no one had actually told me.

They handed me over to the nurses on the early pregnancy ward G1 and wished me luck. I was asked by one of the nurses to provide a second urine sample to confirm pregnancy - which was a little bit awkward when I still had the damn cannula in my wrist! Around 15 minutes later another nurse came to discuss my issues and advised they were waiting for my blood results to be sent over. A very confused me then advised that no one had taken my blood so they might be waiting a while. The nurse then advised they would have to take my blood now and rush through the tests. After 4 viles of blood were taken - NOT via the cannula that I still had in - they were sent off to be tests and I was told this could take up to an hour.

Whilst waiting for the results a doctor came to see me and asked if I wanted any pain relief in which I replied no, but I would quite like to get this cannula out of my arm. She then advised that she couldn't remove it at they would need this if the results shown an ectopic pregnancy.

An hour later and still no blood results - by this point it was 5oclock and I had been in hospital for 8 hours with no food or drink. When asked if I was able to have a cup of tea I was advised that I couldn't as if I needed surgery I would need to be nil by mouth.

Another girl came into the waiting room and proceeded to fill out a form and have an early pregnancy scan to which I was a little annoyed as this is all I was waiting for. After breaking down in a tired and hungry hormonal sob the nurses rang the testing department who advised they had spun my bloods 3 times and were confused by the results. They provided a rough result but said this was not 100%. Finally at 6oclock I was able to be scanned.

The nurses who conducted the scan were lovely and very gentle and confirmed this was not an ectopic pregnancy and removed my cannula - FINALLY! ! They also confirmed that I may be having twins so they wanted to see me again in 2 weeks!

I was then discharged around 7pm. All in all the nurses were lovely but I just wish that the doctors surgery were as proactive as them as if it wasn't for me going to A&E I wouldn't of even known I may have a complication until 12 weeks! I was also severely annoyed about spending 6 hours with a painful cannula in my hand which was never used - if you couldn't tell.

Massive thank you to the nurses at Hallamshire G1 who looked after me so well and even offered me tea and toast before I left.

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Response from Farhana Ali, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Congratulations on your wonderful news!

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback on your recent visit to the A&E department and ward G1. I am sorry that on this occasion your care was not of the high standard we would expect at our Trust. We would like to be able to respond in more detail to you about this.

If you would like us to investigate your concerns further please do contact our Patient Services Team on either 0114 271 2400 or pst@sth.nhs.uk and they will take additional details from you.

I would also like to thank you for your kind comments regarding the nursing and ambulance staff. Staff always welcome positive feedback and I will ensure your comments are passed on to those involved.

I wish you all the best with your pregnancy.

Thank you again.

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