"Concerns about the care of my daughter"

About: Homerton University Hospital / Accident and emergency Homerton University Hospital / Trauma and orthopaedics

(as a parent/guardian),

My daughter sustained a knee injury in Lee Valley Ice Rink in December 2012, (she just fell sideways onto the ice whilst getting off the rink - no crash, no speed!).

We went to A&E in Homerton University Hospital where she was given a pair of crutches and sent home with a splint (a joyful experience at 1am with it taking over an hour to walk 2 blocks!) and was treated for broken tibia, ligament that had torn away from the bone and taken some bone fragments with it.

The doctor she saw gave her a huge splint, told her not to move for 2 weeks as the x ray showed trauma because the fat had moved. She was told to return after 2 weeks and he said she should have an MRI scan then because the inflammation would have calmed down enough to see what was going on.

The splint was cumbersome but apart from that he seemed to know what he was talking about, only her leg stayed really swollen the second it was not elevated.

We went back 2 weeks later and saw another doctor. Again it took about an hour to get there on crutches (same distance as getting to a bus stop from our house) and my daughter really hurt her the ankle on the good leg.

The doctor was good in that he got her some really good crutches and referred her to physio who showed us how to use the new crutches (and my God - ask for them because you can actually use them unlike the grey ones which blistered her hands), but where he went wrong was he told us in not so many words that the other doctor was a idiot. He said the splint was xxxx.

That was actually true - Paul and Stewart - who are WONDERFUL from the plaster room gave us a state of the art brace and thank God set it at an angle not straight - so she would actually be able to bend it once she had recovered. He was also really rude to us about the fact that she was in a wheelchair - contact your local Red Cross immediately as it takes 10 days or so to organize - so you can always ring and cancel if you don't need it - you just give them a donation - and you can pay a delivery charge and have it delivered to your home - which by the way no-one at the hospital tells you about - they just throw you out into the street and expect you to get home.

The only reason I knew about this was because a friend suggested it to me whose son had just been discharged from Royal London after an operation again with no means of getting home and like her not possible to bend leg to put it in a car.)

Again it was Paul and Stewart from the plaster room who said that it was imperative that she used a wheelchair, particularly carrying a heavy rucksack with all her books in a chaotic secondary school - the world is so lucky they work there!

This doctor also said she did not need an MRI scan. He had been doing this job 20 years and it was just a broken tibia. She had several appointments and follow up physio with a lady called Jennifer Smith who I'm naming because she was great!

She had recently built up to walking again (after being in a brace/wheelchair). We thought that she had recovered and Homerton discharged her.

She was shopping about 10 days ago and out of the blue and rang me from Oxford Street screaming her head off because she was in agony and she suddenly could not walk (no injury, no trauma). She had also had a couple of incidences of the knee clicking out of place and causing her pain which were alarming the week before it happened and since it happening the muscles just don't seem to be keeping it in place.

I took her to A&E. The fracture clinic receptionists refused to give her an appointment because she was officially discharged (although it did not take rocket science to see it was the same injury: -() Same response from physio department secretaries, who were also really rude although with a lot of arguing they did tell the physio - who was really concerned and contacted us asap to find out what had happened and gave us some suggestions just to keep muscle tone.

The doctor in A&E where we had to spend several days was very embarrassed. She said we would need an MRI scan and sent her straight to fracture clinic for first thing the next morning. At the fracture clinic we saw a registrar who was really surprised she had not had an MRI scan. He spoke with the consultant who said she would get an MRI scan last week and a follow up the same day so they could make a care plan for her ASAP- but now apparently she is not going to get it until June 4th with no follow up appointment until June 25th.

No physio, no interim appointments, no care plan which she was promised. She's in a brace again that looks like Iron Man 3 and needs crutches to walk. If she takes the brace off the knee is completely unstable and it's getting really inflamed - even the short journey to school which is literally 2 blocks from our house is making it swell up.

I am really worried about this and have completely lost confidence in the fracture clinic at Homerton - because it has been completely inconsistent (she was given a splint and told she would get an MRI when she was 1st admitted because the movement of fat in her knee indicated trauma) then the next doctor said it was totally unnecessary and it was only a broken tibia and he'd seen it hundreds of times before... etc etc ) - not only with this but other incidents with my children when people have completely contradicted each other (you never ever get to see the same one) - and the only people who seem to know what they are doing are Paul and Stewart in the plaster room - and I really don't know what to do - but I do know that before this happened my daughter was on the orienteering team, totally fit and healthy and really enjoying sport and now she's completely demoralised.

I also know it is really important to get it right where there are joints like on her knee and that she could be left with a problem for life unless this is dealt with properly.

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