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"DVT Deep Vein Thrombosis"

About: Rockingham General Hospital / Emergency Department

(as the patient),

On a day a few months ago at about 10pm, 3 weeks after I fractured my ankle I developed bad calf pain. I rested through the day and thought it might go away but unfortunately the pain got worse late at night. My partner decided to call the after-hours nurse and after explaining the symptoms they stressed us to see a doctor ASAP.

Still not thinking much we called the after- hours doctor who told us to go to ED as they can't do an ultrasound at home.

We then decided to go to ED and the triage nurse was confirming that we did well not to waste more time and come to ED.

After I saw the first doctor who asked me while they were taking notes if my partner was ‘my friend with benefits’ and told me several times it is very unlikely that I developed DVT (deep vein thrombosis). They then said - I guess we can take a blood test - but they wanted the senior doctor to see me first. So the senior doctor then asked me - how do you want us to investigate if you have DVT or not? Your leg is in a cast – and after I responded they said - okay let's do the blood test, but it is very unlikely.

Unfortunately I only had one of the symptoms and that was that the pain felt like after a bad calf cramp, so yes it might have been hard to diagnose but it isn't my fault that my body just showed one symptom.

The whole time I felt like a burden, and as if I exaggerated the pain I had. Not a nice feeling when you don't even really know what DVT means (at that stage).

An hour later the blood test came back positive but I got send home as taking an ultrasound would have taken too long. So I was told to go home and sleep and see my GP in the morning to get a referral for an ultrasound.

We drove home, had a bad sleep and went to the GP the next morning. My GP nearly freaked out and gave me a blood thinner straight away and called Global Diagnostics to fit me in as an emergency.

After a thorough ultrasound they found the blood clot sitting just on the end of the cast.

Now I’m on blood thinners for 3 months and a follow up ultrasound is required.

My question now that I have a lot of knowledge about DVT is: Why did you send me home if the blood test said there is a chance of DVT? Every time I was moving the leg the clot could have broke off and travelled up my veins and caused real threat to my wellbeing if not even life threatening situation.

I know now that the opening times of the ultrasound department in your hospital are 8am – 5pm Monday - Friday, but they could have sent me to Fiona Stanley Hospital or at least suggested it. As I am the patient and don't know what it all means and how serious it all is I was trusting you.

From now on I will question every doctor in the future.

I hope you learn from this incident and no one else has to go through this odyssey.

And I know we are all humans and humans make mistakes but please not on someone’s life.

Kind regards

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