Macmillan nurse phones again


Tuesday 21st May, late afternoon

I’m on my way to the loo, hopping and shuffling, when the phone rings. The nurse wants to touch base, and see how Friday went with my trip to the hospital, what happened, what was said.

When I told her that the operation had gone ahead, I’d had a wider excision and skin graft, she was really taken aback. Oh, but, but, but . . . My case had only been discussed that morning, in the weekly meeting, by the Multi Disciplinary Team. They/she assumed I hadn’t had the operation, that I had just gone to Plymouth for a quick chat, and then come home.

I felt I was being told off for having the skin graft. I recounted to the nurse that my consultant said I could always have a delayed sentinel lymph node biopsy at that hospital, as they carry out the procedure there. No they don’t, she snapped. And then ended the conversation saying she had a number of calls to make further enquiries.

I felt as if I had done something wrong. It was quite upsetting.

It feels l am in a power struggle; my treatment action plan seems to be part of a game. Who is better qualified? Who has the greater clinical knowledge? I trust my consultant, and will listen to his expertise and advice. I really want my glass to be half full, rather than half empty. I think that there should be greater communication between the two hospitals. I would like continuity of care from supportive professionals. It’s not too much to ask?

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