"Doctors differ and patients left confused?"

About: Rotunda Hospital

(as the patient),

First of all, I have to start our story with the fact that we are from continental Europe, but are living in Ireland now for more than 6 years; we also have Irish citizenship and feel it’s important to be full members of the Irish society.

Over the past few years we have learned that there are different practices within medicine that maybe acceptable in Europe but which do not seem to apply in Ireland. My wife and I had a baby in mid-January this year. The delivery was quick and both were healthy. My wife only required a few stitches. One month following delivery she went to see her private doctor. This doctor is also from Europe but deals with all fields including paediatrics, gynaecology, etc. Our doctor examined my wife thoroughly and said that the stitches were alright, but the Ultrasound picture showed some spot in her uterus.

The doctor said that in his opinion this could be some remaining placenta in my wife, and it needs to be removed before it causes damage such as haemorrhaging. He referred my wife to the hospital where she gave birth for further action. He explained to her step by step what might need to happen; e. g she will need to take some medicine to help get rid of the placenta. In the worst scenario, an operation would be needed.

My wife and I took all the findings (written), the ultrasound pictures, and the referral letter to the hospital. We also brought our young baby who is still being breastfed.

Upon our arrival at the reception desk a lady asked our purpose for visiting. My wife explained and told her the details, the receptionist looked somewhat confused. She first said that she would take my wife details, and the hospital would send a letter out about the appointment.

My wife was upset by what her own doctor had said, eventually the receptionist made a phone call, and then she put my wife in the Emergency Room. After 2 hours waiting, a doctor came to have a look at my wife. When my wife finished the story, the doctor looked a bit annoyed. She said it is not good to go a different doctor, and then coming back to the hospital with problems like this, as it reflects badly on their work. The doctor then did a smear on my wife and checked the ultrasound too.

The result was the same; however, the doctor said it cannot be placenta remaining, as she would have bleeding or pain. The doctor thought it was only some fluid. I am not a doctor, but even if it is just fluid, surely it’s worth checking out and having a closer look? The doctor then told my wife that she would get a letter in the post about an appointment for the hospital.

Needless to say, that my wife was not satisfied with this, especially because they found the same findings as her doctor, but it appears the hospital don’t feel its warrants further investigation. Later the same day, my wife had some bleeding and called the hospital, they just said it was because of the smear test.

I do not want to blame anyone here, but if it’s the case that a doctor provides details and feels the patients’ needs to be referred why then are the hospitals responding in this way? At a minimum they could have provided an appointment time there and then, why wait for the post. Also understandably my wife is worried about this and they have done nothing to allay her concerns. I really hope nothing serious happens as a result of this that this "fluid" or whatever it is will be absorbed without any serious consequences.

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