New episode of 24 Hours in A&E: Turn Back The Clock
The award-winning 24 hours in A&E returns with a series of compilations featuring some of the most memorable staff and patient stories filmed since 2011 at King’s College Hospital and St George’s in South London – places where life, love and loss unfold every day.
This episode features patients filmed at St George’s Hospital, showcasing the stories of those patients who are from all over the world.
56-year-old Dave has been rushed to A&E after falling 15 feet onto concrete whilst working on a building site. He is taken straight for an emergency scan.
Dave’s daughter Charlie tells us about his hedonistic lifestyle and how she worried about him growing up: ‘He just always used to hurt himself. I would always be waiting thinking one day I’m gonna get a call to say something bad’s happened to him.’
Junior doctor Jess explains her concerns for Dave: ‘when you hear someone’s fallen from a height you’d be really worried about this patient being a polytrauma. These are people who have more than one trauma or more than one injury and that can be a real challenge’.
Dave’s daughter Charlie was in Essex at the time of Dave’s fall. She had a text from someone at the building site saying he had had an accident. She elaborates: ‘the worse thing was knowing he was so far away’.
Dave calls Charlie from his hospital bed. He explains he doesn’t have anywhere to live at the moment and life is a struggle. You can hear Dave’s daughter’s exasperated but worried tone on the other end of the line.
Dave explains to orthopaedic registrar Dimos that he is feeling numbness. Dimos explains that this numbness ‘may not be a good sign’. Junior doctor Jess explains the potential seriousness of Dave’s condition: ‘depending on the spinal injury they have and where the injury is – there is a chance that they may never be able to walk again.’
We hear from Dave who explains how he lived in Australia as a child and suffered abuse from his father. When he was 15 he made a break for England where his partying lifestyle began. He says: ‘the very first night I came back to England, my cousin said ‘come on let’s go to a disco’… just something about what the music did to me. I just knew as soon as I hear music I have to dance so that was it for me’.
Dimos the orthopaedic doctor explains the results of Dave’s scan. He has broken his back in three places.
Dave explains how his partying and cocaine addiction destroyed his relationship: ‘Something’s got to take its toll and in the end it did. It started going downhill quite a few years before we split up. Charlie’s mum became really frustrated with my lifestyle. One day I came home and I went to sit down next to her on the couch and she got up. She said to me I don’t love you anymore and that was it.’
Orthopaedic doctors remove Dave’s neck brace and he is taken to a ward where surgeons will decide if he needs emergency surgery on his back.
14-year-old Josh has come to St George’s after falling off his bike. He was sitting on the handle bars of his BMX whilst his dad pedalled. He is brought to resus whilst doctors look at his X-ray. Simon, Josh’s dad explains their relationship: ‘It’s not like I’m his dad, it’s like I’m a friend of his because me and him get on like a house on fire.’
Josh’s X-ray shows his ankle is broken in two places and will need realigning before any treatment. Josh giggles in his bay, enjoying the laughing gas. Staff find his laughter amusing.
Dad Simon explains his financial struggles before Josh was born and why he took a decision that landed him with a prison sentence: ‘I was working four days at my local shop, I was going to college and then I was going to my evening job which was working for Blockbusters and that was seven days a week. It seemed like I never had enough money. Someone offered me an opportunity…. I planned a robbery of Blockbusters. It was a staged robbery. It was a bit like a theatre play basically.’ Simon explains his sadness of missing the birth of his son.
They try and realign Josh’s ankle and leg whilst he is on gas. He is in a lot of pain. A specialist will decide whether or not his ankle needs an operation.
78-year-old Samuel arrives at A&E after tripping up whilst shopping. Nurse Craig takes a look at Samuel’s injured face after he has had an X-ray. Nurse Craig explains his fear of aging: ‘I have a thing about age. I definitely don’t want to get old. I really don’t and I think partly, it is because, we see a very small spectrum of older people that have problems… One thing we should always do is make sure we tell the people that mean something to us, how much we care about them, so make sure you say it all the time because then, at least, it makes it a bit easier.’