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To think I've just wasted 5 hours in A&E

(187 Posts)
Littlelanecountrygirl Sat 18-Mar-17 16:57:02

DD hurt her finger at school yesterday. This morning it was swollen and v painful.

Dutifully head to minor injuries where they X-ray it expecting they'll just strap it up. Radiographer and nurse both say it can't be strapped and needs a cast. It's the fifth metacarpal in her hand not her finger. Hand swollen and can't bend little finger anymore.

Turn up at A&E which is like a war zone. No seats, no floor space standing room only. See the nurse after 30 mins she agrees it needs a cast, wait for doctor.

4 hrs and 10 minutes later the doctor calls us in. Abruptly accuses DD of punching something hmm and that she has a boxers fracture. DD repeated that she didn't punch anything, injury was at school when she collided with a friend in PE. Doctor says well ok then (eye rolls at her) manipulates her finger round (DD has tears now) and then says

Oh we can just strap that angry.

Two bits of tape around her finger, not even a splint. DD crying in pain still and a £6 parking ticket later we finally leave.

Surely we could have just had it strapped in minor injuries 4 hours earlier?!

Bottlesoflove Sat 18-Mar-17 16:58:59


BoBaraMoMara Sat 18-Mar-17 17:00:12

Well, minor injury unit had a different opinion as to the treatment required so no, they couldn't have strapped it.

jimijack Sat 18-Mar-17 17:01:29

Hmm strange, my ds2 has the same injury he is in a cast for 4 weeks.
Would have preferred strapping,

Broken11Girl Sat 18-Mar-17 17:01:48

I'd be concerned, if 3 HCPs thought it needed a cast vs one who didn't. And I'd complain about the doctor, unacceptable.

DontTouchTheMoustache Sat 18-Mar-17 17:02:50

Sorry op that sounds shit but sadly not much you can do now. It's frustrating but such is life.

Littlelanecountrygirl Sat 18-Mar-17 17:04:04

You're using biscuit and I really don't think you know what it means

Littlelanecountrygirl Sat 18-Mar-17 17:04:58

jimijack, did you see the X-ray? How far down was his fracture if you don't mind me asking?

I would've preferred strapping too!

Northernlurker Sat 18-Mar-17 17:05:54


You haven't wasted time. You've been getting the treatment your daughter required. I am so sick of people accessing their free at the point of use healthcare and then bitching about it.

Witchend Sat 18-Mar-17 17:07:30

I've heard f a Boxers' fracture before. Apparently they are very hard to cause other than by punching something, I assume in which case her friend ran onto her fist in games, which would be similar to a punch.
Person who told me about it said the typical person who comes in with it is a young male in business suit with a complicated story of falling over who goes bright red when told it's usually caused by punching something. The comment "the wall has a dent in too" is quite a common response at that point.

PhoenixJasmine Sat 18-Mar-17 17:09:34

How frustrating!

Had the doctor seen the x-rays and know that 2 nurses and a radiographer all thought it needed more than buddy taping?

Professionals can have different opinions, you'd hope the doctor would know best - was she an orthopaedic/hand surgeon or general A&E doc?

SlB09 Sat 18-Mar-17 17:09:54

I would agree that 3 professionals had same opinion re cast rather than strapping - I would be more concerned about this than your wait. Waiting means its not that serious and you'd rather that then be rushed in as your daughter is very unwell.

Littlelanecountrygirl Sat 18-Mar-17 17:10:15

Minor injuries has an X-ray machine to stop people turning up at A&E with minor fractures.

Instead we added to the chaos in A&E for the same treatment we could have had 5 hours earlier in minor injuries.

Northern do you think we should just accept any kind of service because it's free?

Littlelanecountrygirl Sat 18-Mar-17 17:11:06

General A&E doctor.

DontTouchTheMoustache Sat 18-Mar-17 17:11:12

I think people are being a bit hard on the op, if I'd spent 5 hours in a&e after only going there on another doctors order, only to be told essentially I didn't need to be there I'd be miffed as well. I don't think there are many people who are zenith enough to walk out smiling and thinking how lucky they are just to have free healthcare (even if it is a great thing). She is just having a little vent.

TroubleInSnowland Sat 18-Mar-17 17:11:31

As far as I am aware, hand fractures usually need to be seen by someone other than minor injuries because of the danger of injuring the tendons and ending up with a permanent functional injury. So minor injuries were correct in sending you to A and E if they suspected such a fracture.
One of my children had a similar injury a few weeks ago and they had to send for the plastic surgeon to check it didn't need surgery. Luckily it only needed a splint and some tape.

Whatthefudger Sat 18-Mar-17 17:12:06

I agree with Northern. Gets my goat when people complain about a free health service

DontTouchTheMoustache Sat 18-Mar-17 17:12:19


EffieIsATrinket Sat 18-Mar-17 17:12:27

Depends on the degree of rotation of the end portion of the bone on the other part / how much of a spiral the break is.

BumWad Sat 18-Mar-17 17:13:19

How did the Radiographer know it needed a cast? Were they a Consultant Radiographer? Was the nurse a Consultant Practitioner too? Did they have the appropriate training to say it needed a cast?

I think you're getting annoyed for no reason tbh.

As for Boxers fractures they are most typically of the 5th metacarpal - usually due to a punch injury. But of course it can also occur without punching. Maybe your DD fell or went onto something with a clenched fist - hence that type of injury. It's not a big deal

BumWad Sat 18-Mar-17 17:14:18

Also how old is your DD? If she is very young it could just be a buckle or green stick fracture rather than a spiral or somminuted fracture. It all depends on what the fracture pattern is!

NormaSmuff Sat 18-Mar-17 17:14:24

well you saw a specialist in the end. who made the judgement call.
be glad you dont have a cast.

Northernlurker Sat 18-Mar-17 17:14:28

You haven't had any old service. You've had two nurses, a radiographer and a doctor. In terms of university time alone that's a minimum of 14 years worth of education looking at your child. The doctor has clinical responsibility and has treated the injury. Yes the a and e was busy. Watch the news, you can see why that it is.

AwaywiththePixies27 Sat 18-Mar-17 17:14:55

That's frustrating for you OP. Hope your DD is okay now.

My DD broke her metatarsal bone (foot) The A&E doc we saw was an absolute darling. If I could have put her in my pocket and taken her home I would have done! Both the first aiders and the locum GP told her there was sod all wrong and she'd just sprained it. hmm We're all human and all make mistakes sometimes, even professionals.

BumWad Sat 18-Mar-17 17:15:21


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