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"Burst appendix (Gold Coast Hospital)"

About: Gold Coast University Hospital / Emergency Department Queensland Ambulance Service

(as the patient),

On a Saturday evening, my abdominal pain was very severe. I was lucid enough to dial 000 for an ambulance, but not enough to pack a bag.

I called three times and the ambulance arrived about midnight. Twenty minutes to the Gold Coast Hospital, then an initial examination and relegation to the waiting area.

Some time later another examination and minor pain medication. This was repeated several times until an X-ray and later again some kind of scan.

I suppose I lost track of time and of what was going on, but sometime after arriving at the hospital (3hrs) my appendix burst. The operation was carried out approximately 21 hours after my first phone call.

I was told later that I had essentially died on the table. Of course I was out of it for much of the time, due to pain and/or pain relievers, but how could I have been left so long for my appendix to burst.

I am very grateful (I think) and the doctors and nurses were terrific, afterwards.

My question is really; how could diagnosis and the operation take so long and bring me so close to dying?

The ambulance guys told me that if I had reported chest pains the urgency would have been greater.

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