About Me

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I'm Carole, living in London, happily married and mum to two amazing boys.I was diagnosed with Stage 3 Rectal Cancer in April 2010. Surgery took place in November 2010 and I now have a permanent colostomy...Spinal mets were then diagnosed in October 2011...In January 2012 I was told of further spread to the hip area (multiple lesions)..My life expectancy is now 6-9 months. Walk alongside me on the last part of my experience with this..

Friday, 4 February 2011

Just a Quick Rant........

Today I just need to vent.....I know you will all understand - unlike some of the medical professionals I'm currently dealing with......

My wound is sore, still constantly bleeding lightly and the skin around it is hot, itchy and very uncomfortable - again.

My lovely nurse, J, has gone on her holidays now for two weeks - I last saw her on Wednesday and she has booked me back in to see her on the 21st when she returns.
This mean for the next two weeks I have to have yet another person poking me around and asking stupid questions...(can you tell I'm getting pissed off with all this?)..

So, today I go off for my appointment with the new nurse, M....I'm feeling tired and fractious before I even get there so not the best of days really.

She greets me with the following:

M - Hello...where is the wound on your finger?

Me. My finger? Which finger?

M - Haven't you come to have your finger dressed then?

Me - No.

M - Then why are you here?

Me - Haven't you read my notes? It's all in there!

Then I burst into tears and have a rant about how I'm so sick and tired of having to go back to bloody April every single time I go round there and no-one ever seems to know what's going on with me.
(I had the same problem with the last two GP's I've seen there as well...it's always the same 'Why did you have this surgery? When did you have this surgery? Did you have Chemoradiation? Why aren't you healing? Have you still got cancer?.......I'm SO friggin sick and tired of having to go back over and over it all time and time again)

Me - (taking deep breaths first) I have a rectal wound, I was diagnosed with Stage 3 rectal cancer, My operation was called an APR, I had my operation in November, the wound has opened since the stitches were removed and that's why I'm here. My finger is fine...

M - Why hasn't your wound healed then?

Me - Aaarrggghhhhh..........(roll on 21st February - by which time I'll either be committed to a mental institution or dealing with my own wound).

That's it for today...tomorrow will be better :-)


  1. Oh Carole, I am sorry you have to deal with this. It would be assumed they would know what is going on with your case, because they have your file!

    It all gets funny at some point. Sheri went in for a follow-up colonoscopy and they asked her to undress below the waist and lie on her side . . .she asked why and told them straight out they won't get very far going in the usual way!

    May you be laughing at all this soon enough!

  2. Thanks CM...(I can't call you 'Crabby' any more because you're so not) :-)

    If I'd been in a better mood today I would have been able to laugh it off - but it was a combination of general stress and people just not thinking before they speak.

    When I first came out of hospital, one of my visiting nurses asked me *whilst cleaning the stitches in the wound* ...'Ummm, how do you poop now then?'..

    It wasn't the only time I was asked this either, because I was asked more or less the same question during my post op check at the hospital, by yet another nurse.

    After what you've just said I'm prepared now for my next colostomy.
    I'll turn on my side and let them search - should be fun :-)

    Hope you're both coping okay at the moment? I'm keeping up to date with both your blogs xx

  3. I would put the key dates and what happened on a piece of A4 and just hand it to them...It is incredible!!!

    How does the NHS expect to treat patients consistently and well if the are constantly incompetent in this way. Like I said to you the other day...I am fine as I have a small practice in Matlock that looks after me well...I ring up and the receptionist even knows my issues and knows not to keep me hanging about. The district nurse has my notes up on her screen and chats about how I am doing and all is well with the little peak practice...why did I move from London...mmmm

    Carole, I walk about with my timeline with me all the time but I only need it to brush up on stuff when I am asked some significant dates...maybe a postcard with the key dates that you can just hand to them...Grrr

    Stay with it dear friend

    T x

  4. The postcard is a good idea Tony :-)) That'll throw them when I just shove it under their noses....

    I have an appointment with yet another different nurse on Tuesday, then GP Wednesday - I doubt very much that either will be simple, but you never know eh.
    Maybe my little minature break-down today will do the trick - IF she logs it into the system and IF anyone reads my notes before they see me.

    I want to scream 'I am NOT a number' but the truth is, in London that is exactly what I am, it seems.
    Still, it's all material for my book one day!

    I'm not a trained nurse but work with people who are chronically ill with conditions I've not studied. Even I can sum things up quickly on first meeting and be sensitive to their discomfort and illness.

    I do the same as Tony and summarise my 'stuff' on paper.
    Also lucky like Tony being in a small town with community GP practice who know their regulars. I've lived in 12 different places (probably why doctors kept missing my hepatitis history) but been here for about the last 25 years and this is the BEST GP surgery ever.

  6. Good idea by Tony, there Carole. There really are some insensitive dimwits working within the nhs. I dread to think what happened to the person who really did have a poorly finger! Bet they have a story to tell too!

    Doesn't do you any harm to have a good rant, and it sounds like the silly mare deserved to be on the receiving end of it.

    Ps. What a thriller game at Newcastle today ay?! Can't wait to see match of the day! Just shows we can do without Carroll - that's the pony-tailed ugly yob Carroll from Gateshead - Not our gorgeous Carole from London! Xxxxxxx

  7. Shents....it almost kills me to say it but 'Well Done to Newcastle' today.
    Bloody Diaby! What an idiot from our point of view.
    But credit where credit is due, your lot fought back and serves us right really.

    Reckon that's the title out of view for us now though :-(

    As for the yob...I thought of you the other day when he was signed over (got rid of) for a ridiculously large amount of cash.. Thought 'Bet Shents is glad to be getting rid of *him*, bloody ugly mouthy knob'..:-o)

    That's all it takes really eh, just a little bit of thought beforehand.

    Glad most of you outside the bigger cities are happy with your care.
    It makes the difference knowing someone is *aware* of what's bothering you before having to explain it all over again (and again)

    I'm okay about it all now though, yesterday was just 'one of those days' :-)

  8. Just remembered something in the paper today.
    2011 is the year of the name Carole (with 'e').

    According to the Kate vs Kate wedding battle of the year (April and then July)it's the name of Kate Middleton's mum and Kate Moss's new mum-in-law.

    So I think you should be treated like royalty!

  9. Such a stressful thing to have to deal with my friend. On top of the distress caused by the very fact the wound has not healed you are dealing with incompetence. How long does it take to 'scan' notes prior to seeing a patient.
    Carole, my thoughts are with you Chez xo

  10. Carole you havnt got Mad Cows Disease, but it sounds as some of the Nh staff have, its good to have a Rant sometimes hope it does some good and they take more notice of people next time.Dont worry about having one of those days it helps to let it all out .loads of love Mum xxxx

  11. Oh you poor thing,going through all this is bad enough without thoughtless people winding you up.Some are too lazy to bother.Hope you get better treatment next time.

  12. See how good it feels to let it all out? You even improved your rant with dialog and visual aids. Nice. Better still, I am glad you have put the day behind you where rectal cancer and all its trailings belong! Keep up the wit and candor. They're among of your more endearing qualities. And thanks for helping so many people across so many venues. That's one of your finest qualities.

    So here's some love, hugs, and understanding back at you.

  13. Carole,
    Love your blog and I know what you are going through.I go to chemo almost weekly and it seems there is a different nurse there. My infusions aren't always the same as well. One time I was told the wrong dosage of Chemo pills to take another time I was given the wrong infusion mixture, because of this they came up with extra precautions to follow for the patients.This is to name a few things and yes there were more. The only way I get through all this is with humor. I can be hard at times cause this is my life they are dealing with. Can't dwell on it either. Got to keep the positive attitude no matter what. You really seem like a special lady with a good sense of humor. Take care and praying for you. Bill
    Ps thanks for your comment to my blog.