Pre Op Assessment


So I was called for a pre-op assessment yesterday. A bit of a surprise as the letter arrived 24 hours beforehand and I had no time to arrange for a "drop off" outside the unit which I was told to do as there was no parking. Had to walk some considerable distance (a real challenge) only to find there was plenty of parking outside but hey ho, at least I'm moving, right?

Assessment was grim. I was told off on several occasions (a) for being overweight ("they may not do with with a BMI like that"), (b) for not drinking plenty before the assessment which resulted in them not being able to take sufficient blood (I said I didn't know what was happening and was told "well it's a pre-op, what did you expect"), (c) my blood pressure is too high and (d) for saying I didn't have anyone to stay with me after surgery (I presume they were expecting an apology for being a widow!). I also asked about the ECG as the screen said it was "abnormal" and I asked what that meant. All I got was a snappy response to the student nurse in the room "that's why we don't put the screen facing the patient". No explanation or what it might mean.

The last time I was in hospital for anything other than as a visitor was when my daughter was born 30 years ago! How was I supposed to know these things? I got back to my car and burst into tears. I am not normally a tearful person.

Is any of this normal? I have now read the leaflet that was thrust into my hands when I left the room and can see that I can contact someone to arrange for carers after my surgery. Why didn't she tell me that there was information in the leaflet when I said I didn't have anyone at home instead of berating me for having "elective surgery" without someone living with me?

I still don't have a date for surgery but after yesterday am serious thinking whether (a) I'll be safe and (b) whether it's worth the humiliation.


  • Catfriend
    Catfriend Member Posts: 5

    Oh my goodness, that sounds absolutely appalling! I am so sorry you had to go through all that. Like you, I am also a widow and have no one to stay with me. As you say, they seem to think this is some fault on our part. I had a large bowel polyp removed last year and they adamantly refused to allow me to have a sedative as I stupidly said I would be alone when I got home! I had my first appointment with the Orthopaedic surgeon a few days ago for advanced hip arthritis and been offered a place on the waiting list for a hip replacement (certainly needed as I am finding walking rather difficult), and I am currently trying to summon up the courage to accept. I will soon be eighty and am scared that I won't be able to manage at home after the op, and your dreadful experience has totally put me off.

    I hope that in your case it was a 'one off' experience and that you find kindness and understanding in your future dealings with the hospital. The light at the end of the tunnel is to be able to move easily again, but my goodness sometimes the tunnel does seem very long indeed!

    Wishing you well.

  • noddingtonpete
    noddingtonpete Moderator Posts: 1,109

    Hello @Catfriend and welcome to our friendly and supportive Community.

    I understand that you have osteoarthritis in your hip and waiting for a hip replacement. I hope you do not have to wait too long. In the meantime have a look at our website which contains a lot of useful information, to help I've put a couple of links in below.


    Please keep posting and let us know how you are getting on and I hope you will soon make new connections on here.

    With best wishes

    Peter (moderator)

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