...or ‘What a bloody fiasco’
Arrived at Maidstone hospital in good time for my 1pm appointment. I was called to the chemo ward at 1.20 – brilliant we thought. I was fitted with the cannula and had my pre-meds (hydrocortizone and Piriton) to prevent an allergic reaction. So far so good. The nurse went to put on the trial drug and oops its expiry time was 14.20 –it is now 14.00 so cannot use it as the expiry time must be the after the end of the infusion. The drug is only active for 4 hours. So nurse takes the drug back to pharmacy – who were so busy that they made up the trial drug early this morning ‘to save time’. They will make some more.
Fast forward one hour – still nothing doing so nurse puts on a bag of saline to prevent cannula clogging up.
Fast forward another hour – pharmacy are waiting for a phone call from Italy where the drug company is based to get a magic number which will tell them which phial to get from the freezer. Fast forward another hour (hope you are keeping up) – yeah they have the information BUT the Dr said no infusion today as it would not finish in normal working hours and as there would not be enough staff to monitor me closely could we do it TOMORROW!
I was stressed before I got to the hospital after the last reaction so you can imagine the state I was in by 5pm! As one of the lovely nurses said – ‘Why do these things happen to you?’ answers on a postcard please!
So an early night and then on the road again in the morning – thank goodness Alan has just put 3 days worth of music on the ipod which we play in the car and got rid of that awful Poulenc piano stuff!
I am grateful to be offered the option of a drug trial but those managing the trial really do need to up their game in terms of risk analysis – it is in an emergency that adequate backup procedures must work.