DC medical procedure pictures missing - something fishy/cover up?(23 Posts)
DC had an invasive medical procedure several months ago. We were told by Dr A performing the procedure on the day that we would get pictures straight afterwards (procedure involved internal camera). After the procedure the nurse asked Dr A for the pictures he was holding to give to us. He told her that they were his copy and our copy was on the desk nearby. She looked, but there were no pictures. He had already disappeared.
Several weeks later I requested all of DC's notes (including all previous tests) to take them to another hospital. I got everything apart from the pictures of this procedure. I persisted with my request (chased alot). Eventually, I got a phone call at home from Dr A saying he probably wouldn't be able to download the pictures as they were on a different, older system as the other tests and he wasn't sure how to download them. I wasn't really convinced by this. My gut said there was something funny going on.
Then last week, at a hospital appointment with a different Dr, I asked to see the pictures. However, the Dr looked on their system and all we could see is several completely black rectangles saying 'no image' on. My deduction is that these pictures have been deleted and that Dr A, who performed the procedure, was uneasy about something and trying to cover something up.
Dr A who performed the procedure has also left the hospital so can't ask him what's going on with these pics.
Does this sound fishy or am I being paranoid ?
I'd formally write requesting a copy of the pictures. As i understand it, if they've been deleted there should be a record on the system of who did that and when so you could ask for that too.
I think actually his explanation makes more sense, that they are incompatible with the software. I would have thought if he deleted them that they wouldn't appear on the system at all?
Has he given you any reason to suspect he's deleted the images. I mean, why would he do this?
i think you sound a bit paranoid that you think something was wrong so he got rid, more likely to be he accidentally deleted them surely?
Make a data subject access request directly to the Patient Services Manager (PALS) at the hospital trust requesting all records held on your son including the history of deletions and amendments (who, when, why) under the Data Protection Act. You can specify the period of time you're interested in but if you suspect the records were tampered with and you don't know when then give a broad time span
The incompatibility thing is a pain, especially with imaging. As pp said, the medical records system is fully auditable so if they have been deleted (which would be difficult to do) then it will have recorded who deleted it and when.
Was there an adverse outcome to the treatment?
Mari50 - no we haven't been given any pictures. Pictures on the system are blacked out saying 'no image', as if something was there but isn't now.
DropYourSword I don't know why he would deliberately delete. I have heard that records at the hospital go missing alot due to possible cover ups. He didn't want to give us the images on the day, then a few weeks later he said he can't download them, then today there were only blacked out images on their system.
Good idea CarrotVan. Many thanks.
Mrsmorton no adverse outcomes just medical problems without a known cause at the moment. Invasive test showed problems but we have no pictures showing the findings by Dr A. Only have the biopsy report.
what do you think he could possibly be trying to cover up?
Sounds like a problem in the saving of images.
I work in imaging. Is it your hospital policy to give patients/parents images? We wouldn't at our hospital. If they needed to go to another hospital we send them ourselves. Patients would have to formally request to receive images (and I think they have to pay) if it is for litigation, the lawyer requests.
The incompatible systems sounds plausible, we have systems that don't always connect and if you fail to save during the procedure then thats it, opportunity gone. Maybe he sounded shifty as he promised something that was against hospital policy or human error list the images. If you have a biopsy report the images wouldn't necessarily be any added value.
It does happen. My private doctor told me I needed a medical intervention due to some blood test results which he'd done. I then saw NHS doctors who were very surprised as the results from the test they'd done showed nothing wrong. I asked him for the actual results multiple times but he kept saying he'd get them later then he 'mislaid them'. On reflection I think I had a procedure for no reason apart from for him to make money.
guiltynetter - i don't know what he's trying to cover up. Maybe he wasn't sure about what he saw ? Maybe he should have run or recommended some other testing based on what he found but he hasn't ?
DC was supposed to get results within 2 weeks. We heard nothing. I had to ring and chase after 4 weeks, and chase and chase and got vague response from secretary. Our follow up appt to discuss results was supposed to be 1 month after the procedure but got moved to 6 months after the procedure. We then went to another hospital who are recommending another path of action.
themorus I believe the hospital does give out pictures straight after that particular procedure yes. ie. It wasn't something that he promised to me only.
steff13 procedure did not go wrong
Shallowstreams that sucks! Sorry to hear that. That's what i'm paranoid about - that something has been missed and it's being hidden. It's not the first time that it's happened.
I have had an X-ray which went missing - they wanted to cover up 3 breaks in my shoulder which they had failed to see- only came up when rexrayed - i must have done something I between X-rays! I would want to see those pictures if I were you op.
What I mean is did you see any images originally? It may be he did this invasive procedure and fecked up the image taking or even just the image saving. Which would be a more reasonable explanation I reckon.
Jongray - that sounds dodgy, normal x-rays shouldn't get lost like that (presuming this was recently on digital systems) the op's situation sounds more like a theatre situation where the technology of two different bits of equipment are not compatible, eg old theatre x-ray machines don't always have the ability to send to the computer archive or you are relying on a dodgy internet connection. If your x-ray was lost on a computed radiography system then you can ask the PACS manager to retrieve them, they should be somewhere...
I think it is unlikely /a bit paranoid to think the images are missing for some nefarious reason - far more likely there was some sort of IT problem.
My DS broke a bone on holiday in this country, we were given the images on CD to take back to our local hospital, they were encrypted (tried looking at them at home) and our home hospital couldn't open them either and re-xrayed. We were told £25 a copy if we wanted one ourselves. Although when he broke another bone the hospital let me take photos of the xray images with my phone which was really handy when we had to see the GP about it a couple of weeks later. Hope you get some answers soon.
what on earth would he be covering up?
Mari50 No i didn't get to see the original photos on the day. Before procedure he said all parents get photos to take home. Then after procedure he told DH about 1 problem that he'd found. But 2 hours later, I noticed a 2nd finding written on paper (that he didn't tell DH) and started asking loads of questions. He just said we'd have to wait biopsy for results.
After which the nurse saw that he was carrying something and said "are those their pictures/photos?" Dr A said "no, these are my copy. Their copy is on the desk." She went to desk immediately and there was nothing there. He left very quickly.
Thanks joangray38 that's what i'm worried about. Did he see something that he was not sure about and then failed to do anything about it ?
He left the hospital and the X-rays disapeared supposedly not on the system anymore. Didn't think anymore about it as I was facing a big op to fix it. @deadpool99 if the photos weren't compatible why wouldn't they just tell you instead of lying to you? Which is why I would ask to see them
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