Forum

A&E your experience?

I have had To attend A&E a number of times. Everything from swollen legs and knees to eye injuries (last week) to urinary track infections with my then in dwelling catheter. I have had a mixed response from good to leaving me isolated and in despair. One example was when I had my catheter I started to pass lots of blood. Not just wee blood but clots and all sorts. It was a mess. We rang NHS direct as always to see if an on call Dr would be appropriate or pop down to A&E. Their response was A&E. When I arrived I was triaged and then seen by a doctor who when finding out I had MS seem to change from one of concern to one of resignation. I was told my family could go home as we they would admit me due to a UTI and that I would be sent to a urology ward. (spent a few weeks there previously due to a huge infection). However as I waited to be taken to the MAU another Dr came in and said we adds sending you home. I asked why and they said “not enough beds” I asked why had this not been thought of two hours previous and they said “we had enough beds then” I said what about the bag of blood strapped to my leg, “there is no urology specialist on tonight and you can go and see your GP in the morning” what about my temperature? “take paracetamol” by now I was getting upset as the last time I had an infection it spread to my kidneys and I spent weeks in hospital on IV antibiotics. The Dr then said “as a professional patient you should be used to all this now” I then asked if they would changed my catheter as it was stained deep red, “no we don’t have time” or empty and change my nearly full catheter bag “we can’t spare any key to do that for at least and hour” I am registered blind and being a alone, in pain and in hospital pushed me over the edge. So I got up, put my cloths and went to leave. The Dr asked what I was doing and I told her and she said “but you have to wait until we have finished the paper work and written you up for antibiotics” it was now 1 am and I walked out crying to call my wife to pick me up. I companied to PALS and also wrote a letter to the hospital via my GP and spoke to my rehab team. All I got was an apology that the unit was busy. I did have an infection and was visited by both my GP and 24 hour intensive care team and had to vist the hospital as a result. However it was the professional patient comment and the perceived “oh he has MS can’t he see his team” attuned that got to me. Has anybody else experiancex this attitude? It’s also not the last instance of this I have experianced.

Firstly I think it’s awful the way you were treated! My bad experience wasn’t with A & E exactly but was with a consultant after I’d been admitted as an emergency patient by my GP. It’s a long story so I will try and be brief. The chain of events that led me being admitted was as follows… I had a relapse. I had methyl prednisolone steroids. I wk after I’d finished the steroids I developed a severe allergic reaction. Was seen by GP. Couldn’t find an infection, went through the whole ‘have you changed your washing powder etc etc’ Treatment was more steroids. Prednisolone this time and a big dose of antihistamine. I swelled up so much I couldn’t catheterise any more so at that point after suffering for nearly 5 days my GP sent me to hospital. I got to the admissions ward. I had an indwelling catheter put in. I saw a ovely doc that eve. Told me that they were going to give me bigger dose of steroids and antihistamine and get me more comfortable. Took loads of blood tests and said I would be seen by dermatology next day, chest x ray more blood cultures etc. Following day I was seen by a different consultant. Made me feel like a time waster. Said he couldn’t understand why I thought I needed to be inhospital with a ‘skin rash’! I said (through my tears) that I’d been like this for 5 days and it was having a massive impact on my ms. He told me that it wasn’t having a massive impact on my ms…maybe on me but not my ms! He then proceeded to tell me that now we know the steroids are working I would be discharged with another 7 days steroids and anti histamine…AND if it came back then I should go through the PROPER channels and contact my MS team! As it transpired…I was having an allergic reaction caused by the rebif. Had the horrible consultant done the tests that the previous doctor had said I would have been treated much quicker and would not have needed to be seen privately cos I couldnt wait the 3months to be seen by a dermatologist on the NHS. NOTHING will make me go to hospital again. NOTHING! I’m so sorry you were teated so badly and I feel your pain! tc Hx

I am sorry about your experience. That is so cruel. I hope you have solved that particular problem now, its a rubbish condition isnt it! I have had good experiences with the NHS so far but I have only just been diagnosed with MS at age 49 so live in dread.

Guest wrote:

I have had To attend A&E a number of times. Everything from swollen legs and knees to eye injuries (last week) to urinary track infections with my then in dwelling catheter. I have had a mixed response from good to leaving me isolated and in despair. One example was when I had my catheter I started to pass lots of blood. Not just wee blood but clots and all sorts. It was a mess. We rang NHS direct as always to see if an on call Dr would be appropriate or pop down to A&E. Their response was A&E. When I arrived I was triaged and then seen by a doctor who when finding out I had MS seem to change from one of concern to one of resignation. I was told my family could go home as we they would admit me due to a UTI and that I would be sent to a urology ward. (spent a few weeks there previously due to a huge infection). However as I waited to be taken to the MAU another Dr came in and said we adds sending you home. I asked why and they said “not enough beds” I asked why had this not been thought of two hours previous and they said “we had enough beds then” I said what about the bag of blood strapped to my leg, “there is no urology specialist on tonight and you can go and see your GP in the morning” what about my temperature? “take paracetamol” by now I was getting upset as the last time I had an infection it spread to my kidneys and I spent weeks in hospital on IV antibiotics. The Dr then said “as a professional patient you should be used to all this now” I then asked if they would changed my catheter as it was stained deep red, “no we don’t have time” or empty and change my nearly full catheter bag “we can’t spare any key to do that for at least and hour” I am registered blind and being a alone, in pain and in hospital pushed me over the edge. So I got up, put my cloths and went to leave. The Dr asked what I was doing and I told her and she said “but you have to wait until we have finished the paper work and written you up for antibiotics” it was now 1 am and I walked out crying to call my wife to pick me up. I companied to PALS and also wrote a letter to the hospital via my GP and spoke to my rehab team. All I got was an apology that the unit was busy. I did have an infection and was visited by both my GP and 24 hour intensive care team and had to vist the hospital as a result. However it was the professional patient comment and the perceived “oh he has MS can’t he see his team” attuned that got to me. Has anybody else experiancex this attitude? It’s also not the last instance of this I have experianced.

What an absolute nightmare and a thorough disgrace, no excuses its you had diabolical treatment never mind the bed shortage.You should send the above to a Tabloid newspaper the hospital needs spotlight being put onto it. You would have got better treatment at a vet. :x XXX S

You were treated dreafully and I wouldnt just let it pass. Things need to change and change fast if anyone is treated the same way as you. I have experienced staff being offhand, couldnt care less attitude before, some 10 years ago when I was in hospital for tests. Got told I was only suffering panic attacks when in fact my tests were all positive, hence ms! It would seem patients are an inconvenience and unless attention is brought and the rest of the population made aware then nothing will truly change. There was a time when medical staff really cared about their patients but alas vocation has been changed to job. Dedication has been changed to clocking on and off to pay the mortgage. I would personally write to MP, write to newspapers and tv stations for your story needs to be told. Im sure it isnt just people suffering ms who are treated like a piece of meat to be slung out whenever its not the right joint. Im absolutely disgusted for you. Hope you are now on the road to recovery. I wouldnt go in that hospitals direction ever again until you can be guaranteed proper nursing and medical ‘CARE’. Best wishes bren x