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Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Got the letter from the hospital

I got the letter in the post today about the operation, and I had also phoned up this morning to confirm that I could accept the date offered just incase they decided to change their mind as the phone message I received yesterday was left about 9.30am.  I should be in hospital for only 4 days this time, rather than 2 weeks when I had the other hip done because of cancer nearly 4 years ago.  This time the problem is only osteoarthritis in a deformed hip so it should be more straight forward.  Luckily I have some of the stuff that I need when I am discharged from the last time.

So my plans for the Christmas holidays have gone down the pan, but this is such welcome news.  I have been complaining about my hip to the oncologist at my treatment hospital since February and it was only when I took my sister-in-law with me in July that he agreed to do scans to make sure the problem wasn't caused by bone metastises and then eventually in August wrote the referral letter to my GP, though the surgery ignored the letter for 5 weeks because they don't seem to bother to read letters from hospital consultants.

But onwards and upwards.  I now have a couple of weeks to get things ready for the big day and to make sure that I get there for 7.15am.  Any nervousness about having another operation is nullified by the idea of being able do things again.  It is difficult to remember what being able to walk properly is like when slowly your mobility is taken away from you.  My life is supposed to be about Quality of Life now, but no one seems to be interested in it.  If the problem had been cancer, then fine I can accept that I cannot do certain things, but this has been a problem that has been deeply effecting me and for which there is something that can be done.  In many ways I have had a year of my life taken away from me when I have already outlived the average survival time of someone with Stage IV breast cancer.  I have completely lost my trust in my oncologist and GP when it comes to listening to me when I tell them about symptoms.

How does this feel to a cancer patient?  To be ignored when you are telling your doctor of symptoms and problems that you have and they choose to ignore you?  It is scary, humiliating and like standing on the edge of a very high wall and knowing that it will hurt, or possibly kill you, when you fall off.  It is incredibly frustrating to tell them about symptoms only to be ignored or told to come back when things get worse.  Worse?  Are they kidding?  I have been right every time, and they have been wrong.  How can you trust doctors who don't listen to you?  Do they all think that everyone who sits in their room is wasting their time?  I was brought up to only ever go to the doctor when there was a real problem, not when I have coughed twice.  The Hypocratic Oath starts with First do no harm.  News flash doc, but not listening to the patient has done enormous harm to some of us.  For me it is a death sentence which I am trying to appeal against.

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