Woman Instructs Irwin Mitchell To Investigate Care
A mum has spoken of her concern after being on a hospital waiting list for seven months before she was diagnosed with cervical cancer.
Jody Daltry was told by Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth that she required an examination and biopsy, to investigate possible symptoms of the disease, including bleeding, back pain and abdominal pain.
The mum-of-four from Havant continued to seek medical help with her GP writing to the Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust asking if she could be seen as soon as possible.
However, the Trust was unable to bring forward Jody’s appointment because its theatre list was oversubscribed
Nine months after her GP referral and seven months after her first hospital appointment, Jody underwent an examination and biopsy which identified she had cervical cancer.
Jody, who is married to Darren aged 39, has instructed expert medical negligence lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate her care.
She has now joined her legal team in using Cervical Cancer Prevention Week in campaigning to raise awareness of the signs of the disease.
Expert Opinion“Sadly, through our work we see time and time again how cervical cancer can affect those battling it as well as their loved ones.
“Concerns were raised about Jody’s case but unfortunately the hospital was unable to bring forward her appointment because of how oversubscribed its theatre was. This raises important questions as to whether the NHS is receiving the level of funding it requires to ensure patients can receive the best possible care and support.
“Understandably Jody is anxious about what happened to her and whether the outcome would have been different if her biopsy had been taken sooner.
“We are continuing to support Jody and are determined to help her establish the answers she needs.
“However, it is vital that there is not a loss of confidence in the NHS and women continue to participate in the screening programme. Awareness of the symptoms of cervical cancer and early diagnosis are key to beating it.” Nicole Causey - Chartered Legal Executive
Find out more about Irwin Mitchell's expertise in supporting families affected by cancer
Jody, an Assurance Analyst, had attended regular smear tests over a number of years which had come back as normal.
In 2015 she started experiencing bleeding between periods. She was referred to Queen Alexandra Hospital where she attended several appointments.
In 2018 Jody continued to experience further bleeding, pain and disruption to her usually regular periods. Her GP referred her to the hospital in July. At an appointment in September 2018, hospital staff said she would require further examination and a biopsy. She also had a small lump which may have needed cauterising.
In January last year her GP wrote to the hospital asking if her case could be brought forward.
Jody underwent the procedure in April 2019. Following her diagnosis Jody underwent chemotherapy, five weeks of radiotherapy and brachytherapy, a treatment where rods containing a high dose of radiation are placed directly into the body.
A scan, in October 2019, suggested that her treatment had showed signs of being effective, but she is waiting for further news.
Jody said: “My constant period like back pain and other symptoms were getting worse, I was no longer have menstrual periods at all and I felt lightheaded all the time. I knew something was seriously wrong. However, nothing prepares you for the word cancer. My head was spinning and I couldn’t take it in at first. This was the worst case scenario coming true.
“I was in total shock and I was scared about what it could mean for me and my family.
After the initial shock wore off I was determined to find out more about what happened and do everything I could to fight this cancer for myself and my family.
“While I am hopeful that the future is looking brighter, I still deserve to know whether more could have been done to diagnose my cancer sooner. Having to wait that long for my biopsy was worrying. My family and friends were telling me not to worry but it was difficult not to. It seemed an awful long time to have to wait.
“I just hope that by speaking out others become more aware of the symptoms and feel confident to seek medical advice. It’s also important that people are aware of the help and support that’s available if they are diagnosed.”