- How long will I have to wait to see a specialist/consultant?
- To make an appointment
- Initial consultation
- Follow up appointment
- If you require operative treatment
- Day surgery procedures
- Post-operative appointment
If you have never seen a consultant or specialist before in a hospital or at their consulting rooms, you may not know what to expect. It is usual for your GP to refer you to a specialist of their choice if you do not already have a specialist in mind whom your GP is happy to refer you to.
You may also refer yourself directly to the specialist if you want to see a particular specialist who may have been recommended to you or you have previously researched, especially if you are funding your own treatment.
The specialist will then inform your GP regarding your treatment and progress, unless you specifically request that this does not happen. If you are insured, your insurer will require notification that you have a GP referral letter at the time they issue your pre-authorisation information to you.
Out patient appointment’s waiting times are usually within two weeks, however dependent upon availability, you may be seen within one week. In an emergency or if you have acute symptoms you should ring the hospital appointment’s team or consultant’s secretary and ask for an urgent appointment.
You should in the first instance contact the appointments number for the hospital or consulting rooms to book an appointment with Prof Purkayastha. The hospital may send you an appointment letter confirming the details of your consultation. As a general rule, apart from in exceptional circumstances, a minimum of 24 hours notice is required to cancel or change your appointment. If you do not arrive for your scheduled appointment without prior notification, you may be liable to charges.
For Professor Purkayastha, please refer to the contacts sheet on this website for information regarding his clinic locations and access.
During your initial consultation you will meet the consultant and they will review your medical history and discuss your problem/s with you. A decision will be made as to your treatment and any special investigations that may be required. The investigations will usually be arranged for you.
During the consultation you may have an X-ray, the results of which the consultant will discuss with you following the test on the same day. For other investigations for example blood tests, MRI, CT scans or Isotope scans the hospital will arrange these for you and will advise you where the tests will be carried out and when you should attend. (Blood tests are usually carried out on the day of the consultation.) As soon as the results are available, you will require a follow up appointment with your consultant to review the results. You will be advised when your results will be ready and when your follow up review can be arranged.
At this appointment, the consultant will generally go through any test results with you and carry out a review of your present medical situation regarding any treatment you may have already had. Depending upon the results of the tests carried out or any treatment you have had prior to this appointment, you will have further discussions with the consultant regarding your future treatment. The treatment may be conservative for example you may require a formal course of physiotherapy, be required to carry out your own exercises for a period of time or receive an injection into a joint to alleviate pain.. Sometimes it will be appropriate for surgical intervention. If you do not require surgery, then you will be advised approximately how many consultations will be required for your treatment.
If the need should arise that you require operative treatment, the consultant will discuss with you in detail the procedure/s that will be carried out to ensure that you fully understand all aspects. They will also discuss with you the various options available to you for your specific problem. Information leaflets are available for your information at most hospitals, so that when you return home, you will be able to read the information and consider your treatment again and any options you may have been given. A date will be confirmed with you and you will be required to complete a consent form. You will then receive a confirmation letter from the hospital with full details about your hospital admission. You will be required to attend the hospital for a pre-admission assessment to have an MRSA swab prior to your hospital admission date. It may also be necessary for special blood tests to be carried out and in some cases a chest X-ray or ECG will be required.
There are a few procedures which can be carried out as a day case where you will be admitted to hospital for a few hours. These procedures are for example; arthroscopy, removal of bunion or ganglion, carpal tunnel release etc. The operation is performed under a short general anaesthetic and you will wake up almost immediately after the procedure. Thereby you will stay in the hospital for three to four hours and then you are allowed to go home the same day. This is called a ‘day surgery procedure’. In some cases you may be admitted to the hospital for a few nights. These are usually for major procedures like total hip, knee or ankle replacement etc. Again the procedure will be explained to you by the consultant, your consent will be taken and all of the necessary tests will be carried out. You will be informed of the exact number of nights you will be required to stay in the hospital so that you are able to make the necessary arrangements at home and work, prior to your admission.
Following your operation, you will be seen by the consultant who will confirm that you can be discharged from the hospital. The medical staff will also be involved to ensure that your progress is satisfactory and will give you advice about your recovery, recuperation period and correct aftercare.
If you have any problems or concerns following surgery before you are due to attend your post-operative appointment, please contact the hospital or consultant’s secretary direct, dependent upon the urgency of your problem.
This will be made for you before you leave the hospital. The consultant will usually decide the timings of your future appointments. If the appointment given is not suitable, you may change it as long as adequate notice is given, but you must ensure that you are seen within the requisite timescale following surgery as advised by the consultant. You will usually be seen for your follow up at the hospital where your surgery was carried out.