"I was offered a second opinion, but hadn't had a first one"

About: Leicester Royal Infirmary / Rheumatology

(as the patient),

Yesterday I saw my GP about an ongoing ailment that has been the centre of deteriorating health over a long period. It was her suggestion that she arrange a hospital admission as I am reaching a stage where collapse is going to be inevitable shortly. The area involved appears to be the subject of an embargo which is ridiculous as symptoms are merely affecting my whole body making it pointless to treat them without addressing the core of the problem.

No matter - my condition is obvious to passers by in the street and my GP stated she would include a suggestion that an investigation be made regarding arthritis.

The nurse who handled me was excellent as he didn't rush me or react to me appearing wobbly. The doctor I saw had an approach I can only describe as odious from my point of view. It felt like being pushed in to a furnace, with questions and physical orders being gushed out pushing me to the brink. I recall being required to prepare for a physical examination which never happened, though I don't recall fully as unrelated questions were being asked which apparently I wasn't answering properly.

Twice I asked him to stop being confrontational in hushed terms as I know what is likely to happen if I get stressed. After the second request I had to ask the nurse to lead me out to the 'day room'. By then I was starting to shake and knew the next step would be hyperventilation if I tried to continue the process. The last time that happened it required oxygen and morphine to bring me back down. I'm not high strung - just very unwell. Not so far back I climbed and kayaked in the Himalayas so I'm unused to my current physical situation.

Staying there overnight would be counter-productive after that experience so I informed the nurse that I was leaving. I was offered a second opinion whereupon I pointed out that I hadn't received a first one, and I declined to sign a discharge when I had never actually been admitted.

Arthritis ? I barely had any chance to speak other than to respond to orders and I didn't get any chance to speak beyond that. I have since noted that the hospital was noted as the rudest in the country.

I will lodge a formal complaint with appropriate authorities and I have left a letter with my GP to discover what happens next.

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