How to remove an Allen key from a hand – NHS Version

Hi It’s the Wilf one here wanting to give you an update on my situation and the course of events from Monday evening

I very stupidly worked on tightening a rotary saw with an Allen key without removing it from the electric supply and ended up having the Allen key impaled in my right hand followed by a trip to the local A&E department.

We arrived at the hospital and started to register, the receptionist asked me what I had done so I showed her my right hand complete with Allen key. She immediately went to get someone, however three quarters of an hour later she saw me waiting and asked if I had been seen yet.

Soon the nurse collected me, told me I’d done a good job and went to fetch the doctor. There we sat for another hour until a doctor appeared, he politley enquired about my accident and when I started to give him the details he said ‘ I’m not here to treat you, I’m just getting some things I need from the cupboard.’

Then a nice lady doctor appeared, she looked, she advised a tetanus and then sent us for X ray. After an interesting trip around the hospital with Sam pulling me around on a wheelchair that only worked backwards we managed to get the Xrays and return to A & E. The nice lady doc wasn’t keen to remove the Allen Key but did phone an orthopeadic surgeon to have a look at it. This all took another hour

 My Xrays were produced very quickly (it’s all done via computers now, wonderful isn’t it?). The bone had not been broken. A very nice orthopeadic surgeon appeared but he wasn’t happy to remove it feeling it may be an operating theatre job. He also added that this might be a problem as for reasons known only to themselves, the hospital didn’t like to open the theatres out of office hours.

When his boss arrived and viewed both the Xrays and the injuries he instructed his surgeon to remove the key manually under local anaesthetic, clean the wounds up, stitch me up where possible, send me home and have me back in three days to make sure I was OK.

Eventually they managed to get the allen key out and the cleaned the wounds thourougly. I was then supplied with loads of pills, had two lots of anti-biotics injected into me and sent home.

This was all very good NHS stuff but it has left me wondering about a couple of things.

 – Why wouldn’t they open the operating theatre out of hours?

 – How the NHS manages to keep going on what I believe it generally described as NHS time.

The staff were lovely and I got home all patched up and in good shape.


2 thoughts on “How to remove an Allen key from a hand – NHS Version

  1. Honestly Wilf, you couldn’t make it up!
    All those hours – we were with you every step of the way after our various trips to A&E in the past.
    Glad you are feeling better and that the painkillers helped you. You’ll soon be back to cleaning out the chickens etc.
    Wendy (Wales)

  2. Hi Wendy
    Clean out the chickens, Wilf?
    Although he does do lots of other good things the animals cleaning out is my job.
    He insisted on doing the ironing yesterday!Rgds

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