To think about a GP complaint for aged parent?

(17 Posts)
boschy Fri 07-Mar-14 23:32:29

My DM is nearly 84. for months she has talked to nurse practitoner and GP about excessive tiredness and pain. she has long established osteoporis and arthritis. to cut a long story short, she has had extreme back/rib/chest pain for 10 days, I took her to GP on weds and sat in on the consultation - he basically said she was a silly old lady (not those exact words) and to rest blah de blah.

today she phoned me and said she couldnt go on any more - we have just spent 8 hours in 2 diff hospitals, and she potentially has pulmonary embolisms in both lungs, diagnosed via blood tests following proper exam, ECG etc. now awaiting CT scan tomorrow or poss mon, plus blood thinning injections over w/e if scan not til mon (am lucky, my best friend is a nurse and will come and do them, so no waiting for calls back to say whether or not someone can come).

AIBU to think that if they had taken her seriously (ie, not just that she's 83 and very deaf) but still has more marbles than most of us, they could have pre-empted this?

if the CT scan confirms pulmonary embolism I really really want to have a bit of a go- old does not equal stupid, right?

NatashaBee Fri 07-Mar-14 23:37:44

YANBU. At the very least they need to know so they can ensure the GP doesn't misdiagnose any one else. Hope your mum feels better soonthanks

PoshPenny Sat 08-Mar-14 00:01:36

Not unreasonable at all... Serious error of judgement to fob off your mother it would appear.

mumalot Sat 08-Mar-14 00:08:46

YANBU. happened to my mum. If you're over 70 and anything other than an emergency they really can't be bothered to diagnose what's going on. Attitude among many (not all, but very many) GP's and ward medics is, You've had a good innings now stop making a fuss. White hair and wrinkles equals invisibility all too often I'm afraid.

Floralnomad Sat 08-Mar-14 00:10:19

I think I'd be rather more concerned about why the hospital have allowed her home ( I'm assuming she is because of you mentioning your nurse friend) than worrying about a complaint to the GP . If she has bilateral PEs she should be in hospital as that is potentially life threatening .

intheround Sat 08-Mar-14 00:15:08

It always amazes me how GPs can make a diagnosis without performing an examination

boschy Sat 08-Mar-14 08:17:10

floral I did ask if they were keeping her in, but they said she could go home... I suppose the IF is there until they've done the CT scan.
just hate this attitude to old people.

vrtra Sat 08-Mar-14 10:22:51

that is terrible do complain. my lovely dad is 77 and very deaf but his GP treats him very well - as they should. They just got him an MRI for his back as he has had weakness in his legs, which showed he has some spinal compression. he's already being offered surgery as he is fit and well otherwise. I shudder to think of him being dismissed offhand by some twat who thinks pain is normal for older people. It's just not on.

Kundry Sat 08-Mar-14 10:40:47

At the moment she only potentially has blood clots, she may yet not have them. Also even if she has them, there would have been no way of pre-empting them.

Hold your fire until you have an actual rather than potential diagnosis.

Do complain. Your poor mum!

I've just had similar with a locum GP and my 10yo daughter.

Long story but continual abdominal pain and ultimately a referal to paediatrics.

Before referral we went to walk-in clinic and saw a locum who basically said she was lying and I was positively reinforcing her behaviour. He was rude and reduced me to tears.

I complained. The practice is horrified and have reassured me he will not be asked back and they are passing the complaint on to relevant NHS departments.

In your case, it won't help your mum directly t complain but it will bring his appalling attitude to the attenion of the practice. If they don't investigate to your satisfaction, contact PALS and take it further.

I also have an elderly relative in and out of hospital. Her GPs treat her like an inconvenience, the hospital get herback on her feet, discharge her and then the GPs don't give a shit and she is ignored/fobbed off and this results in further hospital admissions. It's infuriating.

I hope your mum is OK and gets the treatment she needs.

Don't hold fire for a diagnosis, your mum was treated terribly by the GP, he has no right to belittle her the way he did.

itsmeitscathy Sat 08-Mar-14 10:44:22

Def complain, or concentrate on your mum for now then complain.

A GP surgery missed a life- threatening illness with me few years ago. I still feel bitter towards them and whilst I know it wouldn't undo what happened I wish I'd complained so I had some answers or at least assurances they'd never miss something so massive again! Things like this cause a unfixable loss of trust.

I hope your wee mum is ok, have they started treatment for the blood clots or are they waiting for a diagnosis first?

boschy Sun 09-Mar-14 22:57:10

hi. I agree about holding fire on complaint til we have a diagnosis. my best friend, who is a staff nurse on a geriatric ward, came round tonight to give mum her antiblood clot injection (and taught me how to do it, so we dont have to rely on getting someone else to do it if need be).

she was also extremely helpful about all the things we need to ask/get organised tomorrow (cliinic appt and CT scan now booked, following long time at A&E yest because her pain was so bad).

so I now feel much more 'armed' and if whoever we see tomorrow cannot deal with the whole thing I will go back to GP with her and make sure we see the head honcho rather than the patronising shit we saw last week.

I will never let her go to the docs on her own again - but what happens to people without local support????

melbie Mon 10-Mar-14 04:16:54

The blood tests for PEs can go up massively with any number of diseases so I agree I would not start complaining until you actually know something has been missed...

MammaTJ Mon 10-Mar-14 04:57:13

I have seen this time and time again.

Doctors are so dismissive of the elderly.

boschy Tue 25-Mar-14 14:20:00

just thought I'd update.... she spent a week in hospital, then another week at home, where she still is, in extreme pain and very nauseous.

No PE but 3 new wedge fractures in her spine. I wrote a polite but firm letter to surgery, with result of very apologetic phonecall and note on her file to say she will not see that particular GP. so that's a result.

however in the light of NHS dogooders thread, I have just emailed another polite but firm complaint to hospital. sigh... I am not a complain-y person really!

YANBU - I hate the way some people are written off just because they are getting on.

Well done for complaining, hope she is feeling much brighter soon.

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