Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Man collapses with ruptured appendix... three weeks after NHS doctors 'took it out'


By Daniel Bates
Last updated at 12:15 AM on 26th August 2009

After weeks of excruciating pain, Mark Wattson was understandably relieved to have his appendix taken out.

Doctors told him the operation was a success and he was sent home.

But only a month later the 35-year-old collapsed in agony and had to be taken back to Great Western Hospital in Swindon by ambulance.

To his shock, surgeons from the same team told him that not only was his appendix still inside him, but it had ruptured - a potentially fatal complication.

In a second operation it was finally removed, leaving Mr Wattson fearing another organ might have been taken out during the first procedure.

The blunder has left Mr Wattson jobless, as bosses at the shop where he worked did not believe his story and sacked him.

Mr Wattson told of the moment he realised there had been a serious mistake.

'I was lying on a stretcher in terrible pain and a doctor came up to me and said that my appendix had burst,' he said.

'I couldn't believe what I was hearing. I told these people I had my appendix out just four weeks earlier but there it was on the scanner screen for all to see.

'I thought, "What the hell did they slice me open for in the first place?"

A spokesman for Great Western Hospital confirmed that a representative had met Mr Wattson and that an investigation had been started.

He was unable to confirm what, if anything, was removed in the first operation.
Paul Gearing, deputy general manager for general surgery at Great Western Hospital NHS Trust, said: 'We are unable to comment on individual cases.

'However, we would like to apologise if Mr Wattson felt dissatisfied with the care he received at Great Western Hospital.'

Compensation payments to NHS patients have risen by 20 per cent in the past year to a record high of £769million. At this rate more than £2million a day is being paid over claims against the Health Service.

Full article in Mail Online