Frustration with last-minute surgery cancellation

Frustration with last-minute surgery cancellation

A woman has said she is “furious and frustrated” after a complaint about her treatment at hospital was rejected.

Michelle Kelsey, from Taunton, had her gallbladder operation canceled moments before being taken to the operating theater because the surgeon advised a postponement after noticing “abnormalities” in her MRI.

A Practice Plus Group hospital spokesperson, Shepton Mallet, said: “It is our responsibility to prioritize patient safety and respect the views of our experienced consultants. »

However, a multidisciplinary team that met to discuss the MRI later concluded that there was nothing abnormal in its results. She finally underwent surgery in October, but the hospital said she had no grounds for complaint as her health suffered no damage or deterioration as a result of the delay.

“Although most gallbladder operations are simple, certain factors can turn them into a potentially complex procedure. We therefore have a duty to check an MRI before surgery,” added the Practice spokesperson. More.

“It is very rare that an operation does not take place at this stage.”

They also apologized for the inconvenience caused to Ms Kelsey.

Image of surgeons performing an operationImage of surgeons performing an operation

Ms Kelsey’s operation was canceled at the last minute (BBC)

In 2022, Ms Kelsey was due to have surgery to remove her gallbladder.

Due to long waiting lists at Musgrove Park Hospital in Taunton, she said she was referred to Shepton Mallet Hospital in February that year.

Her operation was initially delayed due to “abnormal blood tests” – which her GP said was common following a gallbladder attack, she added.

It comes after another patient, Abbie Hicks, from Axbridge in Somerset, experienced “unbearable” pain when her gallbladder operation was repeatedly canceled.

The 29-year-old was referred to Shepton Mallet Hospital when her condition became “too serious” for them to cope.

She was originally scheduled for surgery in December 2023, but her surgery didn’t take place until May 1st.


After spending months going back and forth with “very little communication,” Ms. Kelsey underwent a pre-operative MRI.

She said doctors told her the results were “all good.”

Two weeks later, Ms Kelsey was at Shepton Mallet Hospital waiting to have surgery.

Although he was prepared, the surgeon canceled the procedure, citing “serious abnormalities” on the MRI as a concern.

He told her he had “never seen anything like this in my entire career” and warned that a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer could not be ruled out – which is the cause of Ms Kelsey’s father’s death.

At the time of the operation, Covid restrictions were in place and family and friends were prohibited from being on the ward.

“At this point I had a fit,” Ms Kelsey said.

“I received this information while I was in a very vulnerable position, already prepared for surgery, suffering from nerves and without the support of my family available to process important and potentially life-changing information.”

In the following weeks, Ms Kelsey was referred to Musgrove Park Hospital in Taunton, where a multidisciplinary team met to discuss her MRI.

They concluded that there was nothing abnormal in the results.

Ms. Kelsey underwent the operation in October.

She said the procedure went “smoothly” and the only problem was an inflamed gallbladder.

Image of Musgrove Park Hospital Image of Musgrove Park Hospital

A multidisciplinary team at Musgrove Park Hospital ruled there was nothing abnormal about Ms Kelsey’s MRI results (BBC)

An investigation into her experience at Shepton Mallet Hospital was carried out following Ms Kelsey’s complaints.

The hospital concluded that no error had been made and that there was no reason to take legal action as no further damage or deterioration to his health had been caused.

“We complained to the hospital and it lasted for months,” she said.

“They came back with mixed answers and didn’t really answer our questions.

“It made me angry and frustrated, but we realized there was nothing we could do and we had to let it go,” Ms Kelsey said.

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