Monday, 3 February 2014

A&E... waste of time

Riiiight, what follows here is a rant. Not my usual "mini rant" but full scale in your face rant *of my opinion*.
These are events that have happened to me over the past week, and I believe it's bordering misconduct of the A&E department of my local hospital.
I am aware that I could be wrong in my assumptions, and that is just 'how A&E works'. But to me.. nah.
Have a read and see what you think. Let me know too. Nice to know I'm not going insane.

The Start:

Few weeks ago I saw my midwife and told her I was struggling with palpitations and breathlessness in this pregnancy. She wasn't convinced it was purely pregnancy related, so booked me in for an appointment with the GP for the next day.
I saw the GP who agreed with the midwife. He sat and listened to me, booked me an ECG at his clinic and got on the phone to the hospital to book me an urgent appointment with the cardiologist.
At this point the GP tells me "If you feel more unwell than usual, feel faint or even pass-out, call 999".

1st A&E Visit:

Couple days later I found myself experiencing stronger palpitations and was feeling really dizzy and struggling to catch my breath. I decided to go to A&E after the GP advised a few days before to go if unwell. Upon arrival I was seen, had an ECG which did show some extra beats, and had my blood taken (think you all saw the picture of my arm after.) Bloods came back okay so doctor said, not sure why you feel like this. But you have an appointment with the cardiologist in a few days, just go home and rest and speak to her.

I went to my cardiologist visit and she went through a lot and booked more tests. She said if I became unwell again more than feeling now, or had a blackout to make sure she found out. Then I had to wait for a letter for the tests I need.

2nd A&E Visit:

About a week later I started feeling unwell again. This time I got pain in my arm and loss of vision in my right eye. I called 111 (A number in the UK you call and they assess if you need a GP or hospital) and the girl on the phone sent me to hospital via transport ambulance. In A&E I got yet another ECG done, which again showed these extra beats. They decided not to take bloods since I had them done recently anyway. Doctor came in and said, "we don't know what the problem is, you have tests booked anyway (note: these were still 10 days away) so go home and rest. Any more problems come back". Beginning to get repetitive isn't it?

After this I did get my eye checked and blood flow in my neck scanned which were all fine.

3rd A&E Visit:

This one happened yesterday. Again about a week only since last in A&E.
I was at home when I started getting strong palpitations again. Felt breathless and sweaty then don't remember anything except picking myself and my broken glasses up of the floor. I had hit my head hard on the coffee table. Enough to break my glasses and give me a big swollen egg on the side of me eye socket. Mum called 999 and they came out and assessed me. They took me into hospital but advised me it's about a 2 hour wait to be seen.
I was wheeled into the waiting area where I sat an hour before seeing the triage nurse. She took my obs and told me she was going to get me in an assessment room soon.
2 hours later and I was finally called in. They did another ECG (this one pretty clear, just a few extra beats) and you guessed it, more blood. Then I was asked to go back to the waiting area while I waited for my blood test to come back.
2 hours later I was called back through, where the doctor told me... guesss what!? "We don't know why you collapsed. Your bloods are okay, just go home and rest and wait for your tests."
So I came home after nearly six hours in hospital for nothing.

So I don't know if I'm expecting too much. But when someone collapses for unknown reason, surely you should be kept in hospital until they know what caused it!?

Edit after initial publish: Not one test one done on my head. I felt dizzy and sick and zero was looked at.

I'm tempted to make a formal complaint because I believe I'm being shoved away with all this. But writing it for other peoples reactions and thoughts.