Friday, December 23, 2011


First of all, this will probably be my last post before Christmas (I can almost hear your sighs of relief!) - so merry Christmas to everyone! Hope you all have wonderful days and don't eat too much!

Had my slightly more official interview on Wednesday, I turned up ridiculously early (managed to get a parking spot on my first drive round!), so had a bit of a wait. I was sitting by the patient information desk, as that's where I was supposed to phone from to be "collected" and shown where to go. Apparently I looked like I knew what I was doing as someone asked me directions; I'd love to have helped but it was a ward I'd never heard of!

So I waited for half and hour and then it was time! It turned into more of a chat followed by being shown round than an actual interview. We just talked about what I wanted to do and when and what opportunities there'll be for me. Needless to say I'm now very excited about starting my job as a voluntary clinical auditor in April!

Yesterday was also an exciting day, with sunshine promised I decided it was time to get back out on the bike. I managed just about 10 miles in the lovely sunshine, and then spent the rest of the day complaining that my arm was sore (maybe that was still too soon...). Was great to get pedaling again though - so much better being outside, with the breeze blowing and all the ups and downs of the terrain rather than plodding along on the turbo in the garage/cellar!

I don't think I'll be riding much further than that for the foreseeable future, and it looks like hitting the trails is going to be ruled out for a while too. But given I was told that I probably won't be riding again until the spring I'm happy with my progress there.

On a very related note, I'm still a bit grumpy about my arm in general (you should probably skip a paragraph or 2 if you want to miss the rant!). It's not just riding that it's stopping me doing, it's affecting revision too. I revise best by making revision notes, and then going over past papers and tutorial questions. This involves quite a lot of writing. Turns out I still can't write that much before my arm hurts enough that I have to stop. This is getting quite frustrating - my aim was to have my notes all done within the first 3 weeks of the holidays, and then spend the last week going over questions and whatnot. Now I've been quite busy this week so I've not had as much time as I'd like to do work but when I have had time (like this afternoon), I haven't been able to capitalise on it because it gets to the point where I just have to stop. I'm sure I'll manage to get it done, it's just going to take more planning (and probably a few more painkillers!), but it's the principle - I don't like the fact that it's getting in the way.

It all comes down to the surgery I had. Yes that surgery I had where not only did they not fix the problem, they made it worse. I was reasonably well looked after by the NHS throughout, for the most part I was seen very quickly, and eventually by the right person. People juggled their schedules so they could fit me in, and although I had to wait around all day to then be cancelled on the first day my op was scheduled for, and was then delayed on the day that it eventually happened I know that that wasn't really anyone's fault and there wasn't much that could be done about it.

But I do feel that maybe my consultant was a little bit too quick to go into surgery (although I guess most surgeons will always pick the surgical option as the best one), don't get me wrong, my consultant is really nice and I'm glad I've got him but I can't help but think if we'd waited a while for surgery it might have been deemed unnecessary and I then I wouldn't be in this predicament!

I like to think this experience is something I'll take with me into medicine (assuming I get there), and maybe I'll tend to take the more conservative options. Or perhaps, as a doctor I'd end up making similar decisions to my consultant as I will have been trained to do the job in a similar way that he was!

In summary, NHS is great but I still feel broken!

Feel free to share any thoughts/opinions!

I don't suppose I'm going to get much more work done today (which is disappointing because there's so much to do!), the combination of sore arm plus the next lot of notes being about enzymes in the nitrogen cycle isn't doing much for my motivation!

So with that, I shall sign off!

Merry Christmas :-)


  1. Yes, Surgeons *like* to operate...

    No, sometimes it *isn't* the best option no matter how convincing and persuasive they are...

    But we can only agree to things with the best information and knowledge that we have at any given time, and we don't have the benefit of hindsight...

    And while you are still *in* the situation it is really difficult to see how you can benefit from it (I know because I also was subjected to the *wrong* operation last year which slowed my recovery by about 6 months!) but ALL your experiences will be of benefit to you in medicine!!

    Awesome news on the Clinical Auditing job - another really helpful insight for you :o)

    And great to see you out in the bike again.
    [teaching Grandma to suck eggs moment] Take your time, build it up slowly, but mostly enjoy it [/teaching Grandma to suck eggs moment]
    Have a great Christmas and New Year :o)

  2. I know it's just one of those things, the risks may not have been properly explained to me (or maybe they were downplayed), but given the situation again I'm pretty sure I'd have still opted for the surgery if there wasn't any more information available because at the time it seemed like the best option to fix the problem. It's just frustrating to think that had a different decision been made things might be different now, but it could be an awful lot worse so I'm not complaining!

    I'll definitely be taking it slowly, have really missed the bike and it was great to get back out there but I don't want to do myself any harm and I'm sure medical advice is there fore a reason...

    Thanks - hope you have a good Christmas and new year too :-)