Post op care
My stepson was seen for surgery12/5/22 for brachial plexus injury. He has had 1 follow up appointment, all other follow up appts have been postponed for various reasons. So he is now 7 weeks post op , and no one is contacting him regarding post op care at this point. He has no idea if he is still suppose to be in the sling that was provided after surgery, he has no idea if he should be starting physical therapy, he has so many questions but absolutely no one is responding! We need answers and am not sure where to turn as no one wants to respond to numerous requests. I certainly someone here can help point us in the right direction!!
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@henson2 Hello and welcome to Connect. I can tell you from my experience as a surgical patient, the incision takes about 6 weeks to heal and there is likely to be inflammation from the surgery. It may be too soon for physical therapy. The order for that must come from the surgeon when they release the patient to do that.
Is your stepson making the calls himself? I ask that because another person may not have HIPPA clearance to discuss his treatment, and that may be a reason calls are not returned. The doctor may not want to acknowledge there has been any treatment if someone calls without signed HIPPA clearance. If your stepson is an adult, he would have to sign for you to access his medical information.
One suggestion is for your stepson to ask questions on a patient portal. That puts the questions in the record in writing which waits for a response in the hospital system. Usually those questions are answered by an assistant or a nurse. There is a reasonable time that they will say for those messages to be returned, perhaps within a week, and likely not on weekends. You can also call the surgical department and ask if the doctor is out of town for some reason and ask if anyone else is taking their patient calls.
The hospital should also have an office that takes complaints. At Mayo, it is the Office of Patient Experience for example. If your stepson has waited a long time with no responses, that would be another avenue.
Yes, my stepson and his wife have called numerous times, they have gone through his portal. When they called the other day the front desk receptionist noted that she can see all their inquiries and sees that no one has responded. They were assured that someone would call but of course no one has. It just seems to me that cancellation of a 4 week and 6 week appointment warrants some sort of communication. I have worked for surgeon’s before and never put patients off when they had questions or concerns. He is highly concerned and feels put off.
Thanks for responding!