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AIBU to expect DS to have a fracture clinic appointment sooner than next Wed?

(13 Posts)
wangle99 Thu 11-Aug-11 16:19:24

DS injured his elbow yesterday, went to minor injuries where it was x-rayed. No obvious break or fracture however MI nurse wasn't happy with a certain piece of bone (apparently should have equal space each side but quite clearly doesn't). She waited for A&E consult at other hospital to look but they were too busy so she sent us home and said she'd phone us. Phoned us saying nobody from big hospital had time to look so her colleague had looked and said 'no definately isn't right'.

They phoned me this morning after having made fracture clinic appointment - MI nurse had said she wanted us seen tomorrow (Friday), appointment is for next Wednesday.

I phoned the fracture clinic and said we'd take a cancellation as live relatively close and I can go anytime and was told that they overbook their clinics and hope people don't turn up so the clinic runs better and they cannot offer cancellation appointments.

DS is 7, in a sling and feeling pretty sorry for himself as cannot go out and play with his friends as always too rough and tumble. He has to keep sling on till Wednesday.

AIBU for wanting an appointment earlier than this? Am concerned it's going to start to heal in the position it is in and will be worse eventually.

YellowDinosaur Thu 11-Aug-11 16:26:26

I can understand your concern and I would push for an earlier appointment.

However, in all liklihood as it is so subtle that they are not in fact sure there is a fracture, any fracture that there is is unlikely to need any sort of intervention. Can't say this for 100% of course but I am trying to say that it will probably make no difference apart from your peace of mind

AnyF Thu 11-Aug-11 16:39:14

it might be better to wait that few days especially if they are going to re-Xray it

children's fractures are often very difficult to see and take a few days to show up more clearly

if no fracture (and sometimes even if there is, depending on the type) the treatment would not be any different anyway

are you sure there even are fracture clinics every single day ?

Groovee Thu 11-Aug-11 16:46:57

Our children's hospital only have 1 fracture clinic a week. Its busy but they are effective and the staff come en mass from the main Royal Infirmary to run the clinic. Sometimes it gives them time to really look at it and give swelling time to go down so they can do more effective treatment.

wangle99 Thu 11-Aug-11 16:48:49

There are clinics every day, this clinic serves the whole of Cornwall as the first point of call after an injury then you can be seen by the outreach clinics at local hospitals. They told me they are fully booked all day every day until next Wednesday.

We don't have a children's hospital down here.

Perhaps I am being unreasonable then it just struck me as a long time to make him wait when MI nurse said she'd requested an appointment on Friday for consultant to check x-ray results at the clinic.

youarekidding Thu 11-Aug-11 17:07:47

It seems like a long time - I agree. However here if a child has a fracture they are put in a tempory cast/ heavy bandage until the appointment if it's thought that's whats needed. The fracture clinic just review and re plaster the patient.

I would maybe contact the local hospital again and ask if they think a tempory cast etc is required and if they can do something to stablise it until the appointment. It maybe they don't think it does.

I expect tbh the l;ong wait is due to it being the summer holidays and high number of fractures occuring, and perhaps as Cornwall is a major tourist spot they are dealing with residents and visitors and therefore really strethching their resources?

wheresthepimms Thu 11-Aug-11 17:10:16

I would be concerned as it is his elbow. My DS injured his when 2 and was told there was no fracture, it was very painful so put in sling and told to come back in a weeks time for fracture clinic appointment, we took him back to A&E twice in the week and also to gp (who told us to go to A&E) as he was in increasing amounts of pain. Finally when we had the fracture clinic appointment they said he had fractured it but the staff had missed it as it didn't show up to well because his bones were young, they should have been looking for fluid not breaks. By the time we got the appointment his elbow had started to set, he is now 7 and cannot extend his elbow without it being skewed out to one side, can't bowl properly at cricket as it looks like he is bowling a no ball

If it is still painful I would take him back or to a different A&E (know that may be hard if it is a long way away). I am very cautious when it comes to elbows given our experience.

AnyFucker Thu 11-Aug-11 18:15:39

she might have requested an appt, but if you are sure he has the first available one, then that is that, I suppose

you cannot always take the word of health professionals not actually aware of waiting times at other centres, tbqh

I don't think you are BU, btw, but you are probably one of hundreds of others sets of parents equally concerned about their own children

VeronicaCake Thu 11-Aug-11 19:06:12

Can you call your GP or call the ortho clinic back to explain your concerns and ask if there are any probs with waiting till next Wed. I know nowt about children's fractures but I know that sometimes with adult ones it makes sense to immobilise unclear ones for a while and hope they start to heal because it is only once the healing begins that the damaged bone tissue becomes clear on an x-ray. So waiting to Wed might be a good plan.

NLurkerispackingforholiday Thu 11-Aug-11 19:17:09

Fracture clinics are under huge pressure and doctors NEVER know when the next appointment is. (I work in hospital admin btw)

Dd3 hurt her elbow a couple of months ago. We went back to ED the day after being seen on minor injuries because she wasn't using it at all. If you go back you can't follow the minor injuries path again but have to wait and be seen in main ED. If this is the same down with you that might get you some senior review and reassurance? I wouldn't go back unless you are v worried though as it puts more pressure on ED and of course you have to wait and wait and wait!

unfitmother Thu 11-Aug-11 19:22:52

YANBU to be worried but appt time seems very reasonable.

wangle99 Thu 11-Aug-11 21:56:55

Thank you I guess I'm just panicking as a mum! My daughter fractured her leg when she was 18 months old and they slotted her in the clinic the next day (but perhaps this was due to her age?) so I figured it would be the same for DS.

He does have a bit more movement today, he still can't straighten it though. He's fed up with the sling already - he was loving it yesterday now it's just getting in his way!

Will see how it goes with regards to going back but if pain does get worse I'm going to take him straight back to A&E.

AnyFucker Thu 11-Aug-11 21:59:24

Good plan x

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