"Appointment and Surgery care were good...."

About: Bmi - The Highfield Hospital

I was referred by my GP for a gynaecological consultation in late Jan and was able to get an appointment within 3 days.

I was seen on time and was briefed on the next steps - a minor surgery to remove a gland.

The operation was scheduled for three weeks later.

I arrived at 7.30am and was taken to my private room within five minutes.

During my time there, I was briefed as to what would happen and when.

The hospital was clean, although felt a bit old and run down.

My consultant and anatheasiologist visited before and after the operation.

I felt confident that they both were competent and respected me as a patient.

I have mixed reviews of the nurses that I dealt with.

One was very professional.

The other was less professional - she was very nice however swore repeatedly, very casual about all elements relating to my care, contradicted bathing advice given by the consultant and seemed completely unaware of the operation that I was having and where my wound would be.

Surgery took slightly longer than expected but was deemed to be successful.

There was no pressure to leave until I was ready.

I was provided with a sandwich and my partner was offered one too.

I was prescribed codeine, naproxin and paracetomol to manage the pain and advised to contact the ward if I had any concerns.

The lift was broken in the afternoon.

Thankfully, I was able to walk down the stairs after discharge.

I'm not clear on what would have happened if it wasn't working and I needed to be transported by stretcher from the operating theater or wheelchair.

I was very disappointed with my aftercare.

I was severely constipated two days after the operation and was experiencing pain below my sternum.

I rang the ward and was advised to stop taking the codeine that I was prescribed for pain medication and get an over the counter laxative and that I would be fine.

The constipation continued for another 4 days and the pain below my sternum gradually got worse to the point that I was waking up at 3am every day in excruciating pain for hours.

I rang back the ward 6 days after the operation and explained the increasing symptoms and expressed my worry about it as well as my concern that the wound was still bleeding.

They took a message and rang back 4-5 hours later with a message from a nurse to say that it sounded like a UTI and that I was to go and see my GP.

I knew that it definitely wasn't and expected to be able to talk to a nurse about next steps.

This UTI suggestion was given to me on a Friday afternoon and so was impossible to get a GP appointment.

Thankfully, I was able to get a phone appointment and was advised to go to A&E to get the wound checked out for infection, to stop taking naproxin, given a prescription for a stronger laxative and that the sternum/stomach pains were as a result of the codeine and naproxin damaging my stomach lining.

My GP prescribed medication for my stomach and the pain subsided after 12 days.

This is not the aftercare that I expect.

Story from nhs.uk