Incorrect Information In Medical Letters: Is This A Cause For Concern?

We put a huge amount of trust in the doctors who manage our medical conditions. With serious side effects from all medications, we literally are putting our lives in their hands. They have very large salaries due to the level of their responsibility.

The first time this happened was the discharge letter following my daughters hospital admission about eight years ago, when she was diagnosed with asthma. Due to my medical conditions I was unable to stay with her at the hospital. Chris stayed with her. I had left by the time the consultant saw her and took down a history. In the discharge letter he stated that Chris and I smoke! We don’t. We used to smoke socially, but I wouldn’t even say I smoked then, as it was about two cigarettes a week. Anyway, I was shocked that someone so high up in the medical team could get something so basic, so wrong.

In April this year I saw a Locum Registrar in a Gynae clinic. He carried out a routine examination before removing a cervical polyp. The examination revealed:

  • Tenderness on the right
  • Pain (a lot) on the left.

When I received the letter regarding that appointment it said I had pain on the right. It mentioned nothing about the pain on the left- where the ovary is attached to the bowel, at all! I was quite angry that something so important had been communicated so wrong. It makes me lose trust of those in the medical profession who do this. How can I trust them to give me the correct treatment if they can’t remember what pain I have and where. Thankfully this has never happened with any Rheumatology or Cardiology appointments and those consultants have my full trust and respect, as does my GP.

I would love to hear your experience of this. Leave a comment if you would like to share your experience, but please leave out any names of doctors or hospitals.

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