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Patients in UK

Linda BLLinda B Posts: 9
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:53 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Hi there my name is linda and I am about to undergo the ACDF surgery in the UK and as our wonderful NHS is different to the US and other countries and our frustrations are a little unique (waiting times/canceled surgery/etc) is there anyone out there I can chat to.



  • hello linda

    im uk too, and an nhs staff nurse in lancashire. ive had 2 back surgeries, l5/s1 discectomy and 6 weeks ago i had l5/s1 spine fusion.

    Yeah our nhs is wonderful, but with the termination of the 18 week targets, more and more trusts are inevitably not sustaining them as promised and operation lists are getting longer.

    I waited near 6 months for my fusion and that was after getting it cancelled 3 times, to which my hubby rang to complain and then my date was re-instated! my 1st op, i waited 8 weeks for the discectomy.

    Im happy to chat, where in uk are you?
    Has any timescale been given to you?

    L5/s1 discectomy & decompression 2009
    ALIF l5/s1 2011
    Awaiting X-ray & consultant to see if fused, but experiencing a lot of pain again :( 2013

  • I am in the UK too.

    I had a decompression with fusion at L4/L5 last year and have jusst been diagnosed with C3/C4 and C4/C5 compression of the cord. No surgery planned at the moment as I have only just been diagnosed, but I certainly understand the waiting.

    I had to wait 8 months from referral just to see the neurosurgeon, but actually saw his registrar.

    What levels are you having fused?
    Do you have a date yet?

    Welcome to Spine Health. There is a lot of wonderful support here from both sides of the Atlantic. :-)

  • Hi,

    I am in the UK too, but hesitated to respond because I have BUPA and didn't want to rub salt in the wound as it were.
    I do, however, understand about the waiting as when I first saw my GP when my back went bad two years ago he refused to refer me into the private system for my first MRI and I had to wait 6 weeks for the scan and another two for the results and only then did I get refered privately (and in the nhs too). I would then have had to wait another 2 months to see the nhs surgeon so I do consider myself "lucky" to have the bupa. I have certainly had my money's worth out of it the last two years!
    Good luck with your surgery.

  • Hi nel,
    Things are worse now. I had to wait 8 months to see a neurosurgeon.
    In addition, I was referred in January to have an MRI scan on my lumbar and thoracic spine, and I am still waiting!

    Hope that they can help you soon Linda. :-)

  • thanks for the comments.
    I have to ring tomorrow to find out if there is a bed for me for surgery on Thursday. It has been a long battle with numerous doctors to get a diagnosis but the neuro team have been really good and totally on the ball since the day they saw my mri. It was getting other doctors to make a referral was a nightmare with one doctor actually telling me I was a very sad woman who wasnt happy with her lot in life and that the pain wasnt real. He rang me back to apologise and confirm a referral onto a neurosurgeon a week later cause it was after my appointment he looked at the mri!!!
    So far as I am aware my gp has no idea I am going in for surgery but they will find out soon enough. not looking forward to it but I know once I recover from the surgery itself things should be a bit better.

  • Hi, another Uk sufferer here! Had laminectomy December 2009 but unsure if it has really done any good. Had another MRI in January but still waiting for follow up appointment. Hubby has had long term back pain for 17 years or so and no-one really wants to know! He had RFA 6 weeks ago but aching more than ever!
    Glad to see more UK users on here, ive been reading this site for last 2 yrs but only just signed up.
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