Finally got a referral but not urgent

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Afternoon all,

I chased up my referral for MRI yesterdsy and I was told they hadn't received one, had no record of me and I needed to contact my gp again.

I contacted my surgery who told me they had faxed it on Wednesday the 29th, so where every it has been lost has no put me back a week which is very frustrating.

I then called the hospital again who advised me to call back today.

I called this afternoon and I have been referred but not as urgent and was told I have to wait up until the 16th on June for an appointment letter. I questioned this and was told to go and see my gp again.

This is getting a joke now from first going to my gp, if you read my first posted I explained how they have treated me other the last 4 weeks.

I had to go to a walk in in the end who said I had a prolapsed disc and sciatica and to tell me gp I need a scan. He obviously didn't believe me and only had referred me to a physio until they received the recommendation off the walk in centre.

He made my physio an urgent appointment but not the scan, I don't understand this, I can't wait months, I have got worse not better and I'm self employed and been of 2 and a half weeks unpaid.

I have stopped the codeine today as was advised on here because I'm on naproxen and paracetamol, so I'm going to see how that goes and hopefully won't make me feel more pain.

Please if anybody has any advice on what I can do I would really appreciate it, I feel like I'm banging my head against a brick wall with this surgery.

Should I arrange to see the doctor and get or try and get him to make it urgent or should I complain, or may be do that if they refuse to change it?

Last resort for me will be stopping all the medication and going to the a n e at the main Birmingham hospital I have been reffered too. I know this isn't the best idea but I feel I'm being messed around and left with no answers, help or idea of how long I will have to be off work not earning.

Thanks for reading.

Chris

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  • Posted

    Oh Chris I can feel your frustration and I know only too well how frustrating and extremely annoying it is when you are not made an urgent case, when you're so obviously in a lot of pain.  I think as a start you should go back to the GP and really make him or her aware of just how urgent this scan should be.  The fact that you're self employed and not being paid should warrant an urgent referral I would have thought.  Failing this, I would suggest a strong complaint to your local health authority.  I hope it gets sorted soon Chris.  Keep us updated
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    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply Joy.

      I will go down that route but last time they had no appointments for 3 days so I read somewhere if you mention you are in a lot of pain and actually wasn't sure if I could get to the surgery and can I have a home visit, they managed to find a space, funny that.

      Hopefully I will not have to go through a complaints procedure.

      Sorry for the bad spelling and grammar, I need to proof read my posts.

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  • Posted

    I would go to ae say u have numb Ness in legs and having trouble weeing and pooing. They might think u have cauda equine. Which as to be at least investigation with mri scan. Which u could have. It's a bit extreme but if u need help it will justify the means. I did have cauda equine established. I was left to long and I now have mobility problem after it became urgent when they done a scan. I now have a colostomy stoma and urstomy stoma my bladder at to go. All because I was left to long and not treated right.

    so u do what u thinkis right. I have great gps. The reconised my syptomes.

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    • Posted

      Thanks Keith, sorry you got treated like that and left with long term problems.

      My leg does feel numb. Kinda dull dead felling but not anywhere else, i have had trouble going to the toilet but that's because of the codeine I've been on but like you say to get things done sometimes you have to bend the truth.

      Thanks for your reply

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    • Posted

      Any time a mri scan that's got to be done.

      I had urgent surgery transfered in the night on the op table 5 in the morning. I was told my long term was not great a I had complete compression of the nerves for my bottom half it's the other things like having my bladder removed I have had 2 big hernia ops the last on March the 12th. I have a scar from my public bone right up to my diaphragm. I would have had none of this 6 major operation. I sued and won. But I miss my old life so much. I did not get dressed today. Still let's hope u get sorted.

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    • Posted

      So sorry to hear that, thats terrible and could of all been prevented.

      I going to be relentless in getting somewhere now.

      Thank You

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  • Posted

    Hi Chris,

    I am going through similar frustrations ( I too am self employed) but at different level and in my honest opinion you have be be very direct and tough, and threaten to raise a compaint.( such as if you condition gets worse and affects your future in terms of work and mobility then you will be keeping a log of dates and times of seeking medical help and it not being activated upon).

    I was orginally told back in November that I would have to wait 15-18 months just to see a consultant. I paid privately £180 and then went back on NHS list and got my MRI scan in the following 6 weeks.

    I am currently awaiting surgery but getting 2nd opinion from another NHS trust, I have had to push and push the whole time and it is unfortunately the only way to make any progress. Can you change GP?

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    • Posted

      It sure sounds like everybody have had to push and push to get anywhere.

      So do you think I need to go down the complaints route first or only if the gp will not changed my MRI to urgent? If so would I need to quote what you said to the gp or receptionist?

      I tried to change to a gp that has great reviews but when I spoke to the blunt receptionist she told me I was out of the catchment even though its the same distance and postcode as the one I go to now.

      My house falls on the border of to council's, if I join a surgery I used to go to it won't fall under Birmingham where I have been reffered too, so I don't know what to do.

      Thanks for your advice.

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  • Posted

    My mum tells me complaining won't get me anywhere as it hasn't been months or years.

    I think she is bias though as has been in the NHS for 15 years.

    Says I cannot accuse or be rude, to get an appoinment with the gp again and explain my situation as being self employed and off work warranting it urgent and question why the physio referral was made urgent and not the scan.

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    • Posted

      Have you costed a private scan and consultation?

      If you are self employed you may need to bite the bullet. I know it will be a few hundred quid, but being off work longer than you need to is a cost too.

      I was paying into private (£9 a month) and once I got the go ahead it was done and dusted in 3 days. I ended up having a Microdisectomy.

      If you do shop, around as you can save quite a bit in fees. My nurse told me I would have had to wait 8 months for a scan on the NHS; way too long.    

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    • Posted

      Hi Christophe, sorry to hear you are caught up in the red tape of the NHS. Going to A&e will get you an MRI, however if they cannot find any evidence of cauda equina, they will send a discharge letter to your GP. Then the GP will have to look at the results and refer onto the correct team if necessary or maybe send a referral to the orthopaedic team. If you pain is severe I would go back to your GP. They must have urgent appointments for you to ask for your MRI to be earlier. 

      I've been fighting my corner for 5 years. I was diagnosed with a disc bulge after a car accident where I broke 2 ribs. I now have two disc bulges, spondolythesis and stenosis. 

      Ive had sciatica, numbness and pins and needles down my left leg for more than 3 years. I finally made it onto the waiting list for surgery and now 3 months on I'm still waiting as I'm classed as routine. I'm off work and taking  Oramorph. 

      Pilates and yoga can help enormously and they can teach you positions that can help. 

      I can understand what your Mum is saying, I too work in the NHS (11 years) as a Nurse, and in my working life see as many waiting even urgent cases, as there is for scans and treatment in orthopaedics. There are only two options - wait or pay private. Unless you develop cauda equina, there will nothing you can do. 

      Hope you can get a GP appointment to talk this through. 

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply

      I've just lost all faith in my gp and as its been nearly 6 weeks since I had the first signs and I have got worse every week, I think I will have to go to a n e.

      How come you are only classed as routine?

      I hope you get your operation soon.

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    • Posted

      Most people are routine unless their surgeon feels it should be urgent. Here where I am, even the urgent cases are waiting around 32 weeks for surgery.

      6 weeks is really not that long, and please could you try an urgent appt with a GP before going to A&E. I know staff in A&E's that are so over stretched and understaffed, that they really only want genuine emergencies in their department. My GP sent me to A&E because he thought I might have cauda equina, I wouldn't have gone there otherwise. Your GP may send you or ring the MRI department to ask for an earlier scan.

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    • Posted

      OK I will do that tomorrow but I visited the gp 2 times then went to a walk in who told me to go back and get referred for a scan, as my gp hadn't diagnosed it.

      I did this the following day and he didn't referr me, only when the surgery got the notes through from the walk in centre he did, 4 days later.

      The bottom of my left leg now feels like I'm dragging a dead log around and my ankle is in a lot of pain, this has come on within a week, so I'm just worried after reading other peoples experiences on here.

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    • Posted

      Hi i have L5 and S1 nerve impingement . I get severe sciatic pain in my butt cheek, down the back of my thingy then it moves to the outer of my leg. I don't have any ankle pain. My food goes numb when I stand but underneath and on the outer edge by my little toe. My left leg feels numb as a whole but the nerve damage has been noted on the outside of my thigh and calf by a needle used by my consultant and GP. The GP can do checks for a lumbar prolapse, and my GP checks the neurological defects on every visit. My Consultant has watched me lose my reflexes in my hip, knee and ankle over the last 10 months, and I'm still classed as a routine patient on the surgery list. 

      As a mental health nurse I see people referred in for CBT for chronic pain. Not everyone gets surgery, and sometimes their condition is past being able to be helped. Trying to get on with life and not focus in the pain can help. I was exercising up till January despite my diagnosis being 4 years ago. Building core muscles can prevent further damage and sometimes bs k pain can be made worst due to Muscle spasms. 

      Good luck seeing the GP tomorrow. I've been really lucky that my GP is my advocate and listens to what I say. Hope you can build this with a GP at your surgery. 

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    • Posted

      Oops stupid text!! Should read down the back of my thigh!! Not thingy!! 
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    • Posted

      I can nearly walk I don't know about the gym lol.

      I will not be building that rapport, I have seen both main doctors there, both not listened, or took me serious, not even touched my back or leg, just want to give you pain meds and get you out.

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    • Posted

      To be completely honest with you, 6 weeks would not be something any doctor would consider doing anything with unless there was evidence of trauma. I've been under an orthopaedic team for 5 years, so my GP is my go to in between my follow ups.

      You could try cycling or swimming. I'm fine swimming as it takes the pressure of my spine.

      If you look at NICE guide lines for spinal issues, they have standards procedural steps to be taken that GP's follow. Gp's will see hundreds of people with lower back pain and only around 2% will have a mechanical reason. They can't scan everyone and usually it is some weeks and months before an MRI or CT scan is done. The fact that you have an MRI this early on is brilliant, but there will be loads of other people waiting for an MRI too, hence why paying private moves you faster.

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    • Posted

      I understand, Its just frustrating when you are getting worse and seem to be getting nowhere, perhaps I will try some swimming, not sure I should yet though.

      I suppose my last resort will have to be to pay for an MRI but then what after that, I can't afford anymore private treatment.

      Do the doctors and NHS take a private scan or still need to do their own?

      It's just being off work, I don't want to go on the sick and wait weeks to get any money then called in to an office where someone will assume you are fit for work because you limped in there.

      I can't hack being at work in that pain or at work on these medications. Like I said earlier I went out for a few hours and was in a lot of pain, just wanting to get back and lie down, that's the only time I feel relief.

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