Pre-operative assessment, but I don't know what the operation/procedure is!

Posted , 4 users are following.

Hi,

I recently had a colonoscopy, after my bowel habits changed following a gastroenteritis bug that lasted about 3.5 weeks, back in October. The colonoscopy revealed a tiny harmless polyp, that the guy doing the procedure said was in an awkward position, and that I'd need to go back to have it removed. This was told to me whilst I was under sedation, although I remember clearly. I haven't spoken to any other doctor or consultant following this.

However, I received a letter from the hospital with a date for the end of the month for a pre-op assessment. There was no mention of any further consultation. When I phoned the hospital today, the pre-op nurse said the fact I didn't know what I was coming in for wasn't very good, so she passed me to the consultant's secretary, who just asked me what they told me at the clinic, but didn't manage to provide me with any details. She said if I wanted to see the consultant I'd have to wait till July.

So my question is, is this normal? Are other people happy to embark with an operation not knowing exactly (or at all) what is involved, the risks etc? I don't have much experience with hospitals, so if anyone can advise me I'd be very grateful.

Thanks!

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11 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Neil,

    I have just had a colonoscopy recently and had two polys removed whilst still under sedation, did not feel a thing as they corterize them(burn them off) Mine were easily visable so easy to remove. Sometimes they are in a more difficult postion and you generally need just a short anaesthetic to carry out this procedure. Polyps are always tested in the labs afterwards as it is known that some polys turn into cancer which is why they remove them as a precaution. Do not worry but you do need to see the consultant to discuss this.  I do not understand why your appoinment letter did not say this, ususally it says for further investigation and polyp removal. This is a very common procedure, you will be fine, honestly. I used to be a nurse.

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    • Posted

      Hi Susan,

      Thanks for your reasurring words! Hopefully they'll be an opportunity to discuss it with someone before an operation is booked! 

      I was wondering why they didn't remove it during the colonoscopy, but he did say it was in an awkward place, so I'm assuming that's the reason. In which case, would it be likely that they'll need to operate, possibly laproscopically? If that's the case hopefully it's still a simple procedure. 

      Thanks again. I'll keep you updated!

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    • Posted

      Hi Neil,

      The colonoscopy would have been done by a radiologist and not a surgeon, he may try to do it in a similar way. If there was anything worrying about your colonoscopy they would have sent for you immediately so chin up and talk to the Doctor about this. It would cost about £250 for a private appointment. The fact that it could be a long wait until July implies this it is nothing to worry about.

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  • Posted

    Incidentally, the letter I received from the hospital stated that my doctor had referred me to the pre-assessment. Would that be my local GP (who I've never seen before) or the doctor at the hospital dealing with my case? If the former, presumably they'd have details about the operation/procedure, and I could go in and ask them to talk me through it?

    Thanks.

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    • Posted

      Hi Neil,

      Whenever any patient has a procedure carried out the Doctor always sends a letter to your GP, i assume it was your GP who requested the Colonoscopy in the first instance. Your GP should now have a letter from the Colonoscopy Clinic explaining that you need a follow-up procedure. The pre-assessment clinic is usually at the hospital where you are to have the procedure done, you will see the assessment nurse who will take an up to date medical history from you, take any medications you are currently on with you as people forget names of medicines so easily. She will take your blood pressure, height and weight which are required by the Anaesthetist if you require such for your procedure. She may take a blood sample. She will explain what will be happening to you and the type of procedure if it is decided that it is required.

      My advice is to see your GP ASAP as i assume he or she referred you for the colonoscopy, try to see the same one, the receptionist should know which Doctor it was.

      Take care.

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    • Posted

      Thanks Susan, I think I'll do that then. I moved house about 5 months ago, which is why I haven't seen any of the doctors in my new area yet. But as you confirmed that they were the one that requested the follow up then they should hopefully know details about the procedure/operation. 

      I'm not overly worried about it, it would just be nice to know what I'm letting myself in for before the actual procedure! 

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    • Posted

      Hi,

      Just an update. I saw the GP, who didn't know any details about the operation/procedure. However, I turned up for the pre assessment (the one where they check you're ok for the general anesthetic), and the second nurse was able to explain exactly what's involved. I was right in that they are removing the polyp, and they'll be doing it with the colonoscope. Because it's in an awkward position, they need to put me to sleep apparently, as it would be very uncomfortable. That suits me fine!

      That's again for your help before.

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    • Posted

      Good luck with it all, you will be fine. I have had no problems at all since. The one advantage of putting you to sleep is that they can see better and examine the area better without causing you any discomfort. One of the very rare complications when removing polyps is that they accidentally puncture the bowel which can be serious. By doing this whilst you are asleep in an awkward area they are preventing this kind of risk happening. They are doing this totally correctly for your safety.

      Have a holiday afterwards. You will feel nothing anyway afterwards, this procedure is done hundreds of times so please do not worry, it is quite routine.

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  • Posted

    This is very confusing to me, but if it's for a polyp from colonoscopy then I would guess it's to remove the polyp before it becomes dangerous.

    i have to go in for a colonoscopy every three years because I have a history of 5-7 polyp each time and biopsy has shown that two were precancerous. 

    I don't get why they didn't remove it at the time you were there. Can you check the record?

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    • Posted

      Hi hope4cure,

      As I understand it, the polyp is in an awkward position, so they need me to be asleep to make it more comfortable for me, and also, as Susan said, make the procedure safer.

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