Written by a patient
23rd November 2019
Absolutely the worst hospital I have ever been to, by a very long way.
I arrived into A&E at 5am in absolute agony after 111 requested I go in with suspected appendicitis. I couldn't walk properly, had my exclusively breastfed baby with me and was sobbing in pain (I didn't cry at all during labour just to demonstrate how horrific the pain was). In A&E, I was immediately assessed, given a bed, given a drip (I hadn't kept food or water down for three days) and morphine through an IV. A&E was genuinely great.
I then underwent an ultrasound and an x ray. Both were ok. The x ray had me in tears from the effort of trying to remove my bra by myself and the ultrasound wasn't ideal because they messed up the timings so I was left waiting and then rushed through the hospital by the porter. The porters, for the record, have been lovely and wonderful and friendly.
Doctor #1 was lovely - very kind, reassuring and professional. She said it was either my appendix or my right ovary that was the problem. She said she was referring me for surgery (but she also said that surgery will try to fob me off on gynaecology and that gynaecology will send me straight back to surgery). Doctor #2 was clearly less experienced but reached the same conclusion. Doctor #3 (from gynaecology) said I definitely have a hernia but that the hernia isn't the reason for my symptoms - he said almost certainly not my appendix. Doctor #4 said either my appendix or my gall bladder - he checked my gall bladder and said it was almost definitely my appendix.
Throughout this entire time I was left, trying to breastfeed, but not allowed any food or water. I was told by the doctor I could have pain relief every two hours but was having to wait around 7-8 hours each time because staff kept saying "sure" and never coming. I was supposed to be on a constant drip but the nurses apparently couldn't find a doctor so it took thirteen hours to replace my drip. I've only had 3L of fluids so far (and, like I said, not allowed to drink water and trying to breastfeed my baby - my supply has dropped horrifically but no one cares at all).
The staff gave me a medication that I have a severe reaction to and left me throwing up incredible amounts of stomach bile and convulsing - during this period I was completely and totally ignored. The only member of staff I saw was the surgeon who came to get me to sign a waiver. She said she would come back when I wasn't being sick and unable to speak or move but she's very busy. I was so sick and shaky that I couldn't even hold the pen so my husband had to do it on my behalf.
I had a bowel movement after almost a week but the only thing that came out was a lot of blood. My husband got a nurse who looked very alarmed by the amount of blood and said he'd get a doctor but no one ever came back.
I have been waiting for surgery for over 54 hours now, I haven't seen a doctor in over 24 hours. I'm severely dehydrated and I'm not allowed to eat or drink and have no indication at all of when I will be actually having "emergency" surgery. I can't get any medication or fluids without repeatedly begging staff (even though it's already been prescribed by the doctors). On top of all of this, the hospital is alarmingly dirty. I haven't seen a single cleaner since I arrived (except one who changed my bedsheets but nothing else was cleaned). When I moved into my first room the "I'm clean" stickers were there but the bed hadn't even been made. The "I'm clean" stickers were still there when I left. I can see visible dirt on so many surfaces, it's very alarming and I'm genuinely scared to have surgery here.