"Concerned by impact of postponed surgery"

About: Queen Elizabeth Hospital / Neurosurgery

(as a relative),

My mother was admitted from the outpatients dept 8 days ago having been progressively and rapidly losing limb function over the last 8-10 weeks.

Following her MRI scan she was put on the "emergency" list for major surgery to her neck/spine as the prognosis is that her condition will get worse without surgical intervention.

Her surgery still has not taken place and we have just heard it has been cancelled again (3rd time).

My mother has now been "nil by mouth" for the last 3 days. Her condition has markedly worsened since her admittance to the hospital and I question the ethics of keeping an 81 year old patient with a degenerative condition "NBM" for so long and repeatedly postponing her procedure as the risk of such surgery I am sure will increase as the patient's strength/wellness decreases.

I am extremely worried now about her failing health as we have now been told that it is unlikely that it will happen over the weekend. Have now tried everything we can think of to get the procedure done and now fear that she will not be well enough to undergo surgery anyway.

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Response from University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback on your experience of Neurosurgery Services at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham

We welcome all feedback and would like to assure you that all comments are taken seriously and acted upon as part of our ongoing commitment to improving patient experience.

We are very concerned to hear about the delays your mother has been experiencing whilst waiting to for her operation. This is certainly not the type of experience we would want anyone to have as a patient under our care. We strive to provide the highest standard of care possible and we are very sorry that this is not your mother’s experience.

Your comments have already been forwarded to the relevant senior managers responsible for Neurosurgery. We would be very grateful if you would contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) to provide your mother’s details and discuss this further. This will enable us to fully investigate the concerns you have raised and take the relevant action to ensure things are resolved quickly.

You can contact PALS by phone 0121 371 3280, by email PALS@uhb.nhs.uk, via the hospital website http://www.uhb.nhs.uk/pals-form.htm or in person by dropping in between 10-4pm (Mon-Fri) to the PALS office located to the left of the Information Desk in the main entrance of the new Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham.

Thank you again for taking the trouble to post your comments on the Patient Opinion website.