The birth of my son at South Tyneside Hospital

My son was born in this hospital 2 years ago; I have just discovered this website and felt I had to tell my story.

A week after my son was due my waters broke, I went to the delivery suite and was examined by a midwife, she said my waters had broken and I would be induced within 48 hours to prevent infection to me and the baby. She left the room and came back, said the head midwife didn’t think my waters had broke and to go home and come back on my planned day of induction if I still didn’t go into labour naturally, I never saw the head midwife she didn’t even come into the room I was in.

For a week I had regular contractions and dilated 3 cms, I was made to go in every day for a heart trace of the baby, every time they said I had a sleepy baby as his heart rate kept slowing, a consultant was called each time and said trace looks fine send her home. I would then hear the midwives whispering that they didn’t think the trace looked good.

On planned day of induction I was told there was no bed for me on the delivery suite, was taken to delivery next morning. The midwife I was given tried to break my waters, I told her they had all ready broke but she tried anyway, said oh there is no waters there!

I ended up having an emergency section, during the op the Anaesthetist was arguing with the some of the midwives telling them to shut up, they were also arguing in recovery.

The next morning I was on maternity ward, told to get up and go in shower, I was in agony and was shouted at by a midwife for been in so much pain as apparently she had a section and wasn’t in pain like I was. I was walked to shower then left. I couldn’t bend down to take surgical stockings off so had to call for help, was huffed and puffed at then left again

I was allowed home the next day, a week later after I’d had the staples removed I felt really unwell, I was shaking and my teeth were chattering, my husband said there was an awful smell and liquid was seeping out of my section wound

I was told to go to A&E. The staff on A&E were lovely. A Gynaecologist came to see me, she was also lovely, she touched my wound and it exploded. What seemed like litres and litres of puss went all over her, up the walls and on the floor, she said my abdomen had burst

I was taken back to maternity ward with my son and given 3 bags of blood and intravenous antibiotics. The next day 3 consultants and 2 junior doctors came to see me, they didn’t introduce themselves or say what they were going to do. A midwife was told to get forceps, and they whispered amongst themselves, a midwife was told to lift my stomach up (bit over overhang off pregnancy belly ) a junior doctor proceeded to rip open the part of my wound that had healed, I was offered no pain relief or told what they were doing, I was in absolute agony and screaming at them to stop touching me, they then all left the room

A few hours later a midwife and a auxiliary arrived and told me they needed to get the fluid out of me, this meant the midwife putting both of her hands on my abdomen and pushing as hard as she could, again this was extremely painful and I was crying out and asking her to stop, she didn’t, at this point my husband walked in and asked them what the hell they thought they were doing, she walked out with her head down. He went down to the staff room to ask what was going on but nobody seemed to know

After this my husband wouldn’t leave me and slept in the private room on a chair for a week, another consultant came to see me, said my wound had broken down and you could see my rectal sheath, he said my wound would have to heal from the inside out then it would have to be sown up again, a lovely midwife arranged for me to have a bottle of gas and air brought to me, I used this the 2 times a day the wound was cleaned and packed

A week later the consultant came back and said he would “fix ” me

I was taken into theatre and my wound was cleaned and repaired, I was in theatre for 4 hours

it was the worst experience of my life, the way I was treated was an utter disgrace.


Good doctors but poor nursing care on Lyme ward

I was in Lyme ward last July and I feel some of the more senior staff were cruel.

I was incontinent following the removal of my sigmoid colon. According to senior staff I should be walking to the toilet and not asking for a commode. I had many accidents.

I felt very poorly and one night was left on my own in a bay as all the other patients were moved, with not a word of explanation until I called and asked an auxiliary who wasn’t sure where I was going. The next two hours were horrendous. No one answered my bell and no one came near me. I have had severe clinical depression since this happened. I can tell you many more stories of poor nursing when I was in Lyme ward.

I was moved to Wynard ward where the nursing was amazing. They discovered that my wound was still open and two days later an abscess burst This is what had made me so poorly and incontinent.

I now need more surgery and if the nurses have not changed in Lyme ward, I shall refuse to go there. I did get a kind of apology, though I am not sure anything has changed.

Anna p

Thank you to Sheila and her colleagues in A&E

After receiving a head trauma I made the decision to visit East Surrey A&E because my wound would not stop bleeding.

After sitting around for several hours (typically I chose the busiest time to arrive) I was seen by a nurse called Sheila. Her fantastic sense of humour and genuine concern for what had happened made my wait feel worthwhile.

I want to say thank you to her and her colleagues at East Surrey Hospital. Negative attention is all to easy to find so I felt this needed to be said.


Positive Recent Service Experience

Dear Sirs

We hear a lot of negative stories about the NHS and we would like to feed back our extremely positive recent experiences.

My husband Ian had a total hip replacement at Calderdale Royal Hospital on 2nd July 2015.

From initial assessment, to post op follow up we have only praise.

We found staff in all departments, and at all levels of the service, thorough, professional, informative, courteous and caring. The aftercare at home was impressive and a minor wound infection was dealt with efficiently and promptly.

We would like to thank you all very much for your combined efforts in making the process seamless, positive and, for my husband, life enhancing.


I believe my father was released too early due to staff shortages

My father underwent a serious operation to remove metal (from previous surgery) from his spine and have some spacers placed between vertebrae at North Tees Hospital. He went into surgery in the late morning a few days ago and spent longer in recovery that day than originally planned as he reacted badly to the anaesthetic.

He was released early the next morning, with his wound still bleeding as (I believe) the unit was short staffed. This belief is substantiated by the fact that despite him calling for assistance several times (e.g. for a drink or to go to the toilet) before release, no-one came to help.

His wound continued to bleed over the weekend and the pain was extremely bad as he was given no pain killers to take home, other than those he already had. The bleeding was worrying as we were told this should have stopped and being the Easter weekend, it meant 4 days with no access to healthcare services (other than A&E, but that didn’t seem suitable).

It feels like he was released from hospital far too early due to short staffing on the unit and I’m concerned about the quality of care he received whilst there (i.e. no-one helping when needed) and also very limited access to aftercare. If the short staffing was due to holidays around the Easter Holiday, then surely the number of operations handled by that unit should have been reduced to enable them to cope properly with the people they had there.


Hernia procedure

Prompt, professional, caring and courteous treatment.

I would have liked more information on how to get into bed !! First night was very unsure of how to get into bed without damaging the surgery.

The plasters to cover the wound were very good but probably the most difficult plasters I have ever had to remove – a 30 second guidance would have helped

Not sure why there is not a follow up consultation after say 4 weeks, it is not even suggested that you see your own GP. I guess it is NHS saving?

The staff from receptionist right through to the surgeon were excellent. First consultant I saw very nice but they could try smiling a little more!!

Fred Riordan

A&E complaint

On the 30/08/2015 I came to A&E on the advice from Go To Doc, I had cut my thumb and it had been bleeding constant (heavily) for 1 hour, told by Go To Doc it needed stitching and that it was only available at A&E, seen by triage and they barely looked at it. Put a plaster on and told to elevate. Also told us we would be waiting 3 hours to see the doctor for stitches. 4 hours later we approached the receptionist to ask how long, they went to ask the minors department and came out “sorry, would you like to come through” Obviously we had been forgotten!

Eventually saw the doctor, who didn’t ask how I had cut it, didn’t really look at it. Told us we needed a plaster, this wound was still bleeding at this point, 6 hours later after I cut it! The nurse came over and gave us 3 plasters (as good will), no one cleaned my wound or applied the plaster. So I feel like it wasn’t looked at.

I am upset and feel like the A&E department didn’t take this seriously.

I felt like I was wasting people time and felt like Tameside had not met my values and beliefs and felt like at this time not everybody mattered!

The only good thing I saw this night was a lovely receptionist, they were lovely, and extremely caring towards an elderly patient, they took time out to reassure him. This member of staff looked as if nothing was any trouble and they helped everyone that was in the A&E dept that night. Thank you!

As for my treatment I will be getting a second opinion from my doctor tomorrow!


Left with negative memories

Pre-Assessment: All the various pre-assessment tests and interviews and the interview with the surgeon (Mr A Windsor) were excellent and gave a great deal of confidence to my wife and myself prior to surgery as a result of a rectal tumour.

Day 0: Admission and Operation Day

The admission to surgery and pre-surgery interviews were excellent. As I came round the aura of professionalism and care gave me confidence that I was in good hands and this continued when I was taken into the Critical Care Unit (CCU).

Day 1

My care in the CCU continued to be excellent day and night. I realised that, as I was able to pass wind and that I had virtually no pain, the surgery had been absolutely first rate. I was tested for the effectiveness of the epidural and it seemed to be near 100% effective and I was able to sit in my chair for one hour.

I was taken from the CCU onto a standard ward during the afternoon. On arrival I was still fairly groggy as I was wheeled into this new strange environment. Very shortly after arrival the sister was beside my bed shouting (as it seemed to me) that everything must be tidy, then she tried to fix my epidural onto a mobile stand and on failing to do so and seemed to me to become cross with it and then shouted for another nurse to come and fix it. She also seemed to have some trouble fixing it and there seemed to be a big fuss around me. I found it most disturbing and it would have been even more disturbing had I been of a more sensitive disposition. However, after all the commotion died down I was left without being introduced to anyone and without the nurse call button being left within my reach. I think I was certainly not made to feel at all comfortable particularly psychologically. During that night I needed to use the call button. I called out and the patient diagonally opposite me said I would need to call louder to make myself heard. I tried, unsuccessfully, but then the same patient used his call button. Eventually a nurse came and attended to me.

Day 2

The ward round was at approximately 09.00, the doctors asked how I felt and I said quite good considering. They didn’t look at my wounds or abdomen. A little later I noticed that my abdomen was very swollen and my testicles and penis were both very swollen and becoming more red as time went by. As I had not been warned about this I became concerned. I tried to find out from the nursing staff whether this was serious but nobody could answer. Not until the stoma nurse came round and then subsequently the Enhanced Recovery Nurse that I was told by both of them that it was a normal side effect. (I had been warned about many side effects before the operation but I don’t believe this one.)

I asked for some of the Ensure drinks and informed the assistant nurse and staff nurse that I was on the enhanced recovery programme. However, it seemed to me neither of them knew about either of them. It was not until the night staff came on that someone knew about it and I was able to obtain some Ensure. At this stage I still had the epidural, an arterial blood monitor, an abdominal drain and a catheter. I did not feel like I was encouraged to get out of bed despite the fact that the enhanced recovery programme had that as part of the programme. I did later get myself up and walked around the ward. However, on one occasion I asked for urine bag to be emptied but it did not happen until another shift came on. On another occasion I felt intimidated not to ask as I did not want to encounter what I felt was the unpleasant attitude of some of the immediate staff. This meant I had to carry the bag as there was no facility to attach it on to the mobile epidural stand. On one occasion there was more than 1.5 litres of urine in total and I realised that this weighed more than the “kettle” that I had been warned I should not lift for at least 6 weeks after the operation. The force required to prise the urine bag off the bed frame was also much more than lifting a kettle.

Later I noticed that the abdominal drain seemed to be clogged up and nothing was draining out. I also thought that either my lower wound or my catheter was leaking. (It later turned out that it was the abdominal drain that was leaking directly from the wound site onto them.) I asked the nursing staff to attend to this but no one came.

When my stoma bag was quite full my wife asked if someone could empty it. She was told by the staff nurse that I could empty it myself (I had not been tutored as to how to do this at this stage). My wife said that I had five drip leads dangling loose from my hand and that it was impossible to change the bag without contaminating the ends of them with the excrement. A little later a nurse came and in my opinion very grudgingly, roughly and painfully emptied the bag. In fact I landed up blaming my wife (I think most unfairly) for the pain caused because she had complained about my treatment.

At this stage I feel I had not been given or offered a clean hospital gown (mine was stained with the fluids from the leaking drain), help with, or an offer, as to how I could shave or wash since I came to the ward. My wife asked if that was something that a patient’s family should be doing. After a while a bowl of warm water and a towel was brought.

During the day my stoma bag was emptied for me and a small amount seeped onto my bedding and also seeped through to the bottom sheet. I was made to feel I was being difficult when I asked for it to be changed. It was eventually done after I replied to the nursing assistant’s comment that “It wasn’t much,” by asking if it was alright for me to sleep on it and under it all night.

Later the stoma nurse came and bound up my loose drip leads and helped me empty and change my stoma bag. He also cut off the bulk of the exposed part of my abdominal drain and applied a small stoma type bag over it. Later in the afternoon the drain bag was quite full and I asked if it should be emptied, I was told that it could wait. Later that evening when I lay down the bag burst open and all the contents went over me, my pyjamas and the bedclothes. One of the night staff changed them for me and gave me a clean pair of pyjamas.

In the early hours I read my notes as they had been left on my bed and saw that during the doctor’s round that morning there was an instruction in the Surgical Review section to take my drain out. I note here that it did not actually come out until Day 4 (two full days after the instruction).

Day 3

I emptied my stoma bag but was told off for emptying the contents into the WC, however, I had not been told what the correct procedure was. Later, after asking, I was given two different sets of instructions as to what I should do. One set of instructions was that I should keep it to be inspected and the other that it did not matter and I should flush it away myself.

In the morning the epidural and catheter were taken out and I was put on a morphine drip. This made me very disoriented and unable to concentrate. I was not told that I should move around to help get the bladder operating. I was eventually told this. Later in the day my blood pressure was taken and it was fluctuating considerably. Three different machines were tried and I was told that a manual one would be brought but it did not come. I think I was missed out by the pain control team on their rounds but fortunately a nurse came and realised that I should be taken off the morphine and given alternative analgesics.

I managed to maintain a reasonable frame of mind despite, but not because of, the immediate day nursing staff. In complete contrast a day staff nurse from the same floor came twice and made the beds in the morning, she had a big smile and a friendly manner and after the short periods while she made my bed I felt in considerably better spirits. Generally the night staff were very good. They mostly introduced themselves, acted with kindness and provided a good nursing service cheerfully

My general nursing treatment improved a bit after my wife aske done of the nurses to be a bit kinder to me. Both my wife and myself got the impression that both she and her helper did not want to be there.

Day 4

My abdominal drain out was, at last, taken out.

Day 5

Uneventful, different nursing staff on duty with a different and better attitude and hence better atmosphere.

Day 6

Told I would be discharged and this was conducted efficiently.

I would like to reiterate my thanks for the magnificent core treatment I received, I feel privileged to have been a recipient of it. Whilst this was the most crucial aspect of my treatment, some of the poor nursing care I received did disturb me and upset my family. It is unfortunate that we have been left with those negative memories when all the other aspects of my treatment and outcome have been so positive.


Patient Care.

I have attended a few appointments at St Georges Hospital in Tooting. Sadly I have experienced disappointing care from some nurses and doctors. Some of the nurses I met lacked professional knowledge as well as care. Years ago the situation in this regard was much more impressive. Some nurses who were participating in the post operative hand clinic didn’t seem interested in the pain their patient was experiencing or to be very professional. The registrar or surgeon who operates is meant to see the patient’s wound after a few weeks (according to what A&E told me) but it doesn’t seem they are available to take care of their patients. Instead I saw another Surgeon but again it felt they lacked interest in their patient’s wound or at least they seemed to show minimal interest.