A pensioner claims doctors sent him home with just paracetamol after a nasty fall left him with a bump on his head – that grew to the size of an ORANGE.
George Hobbs is now on the list for urgent surgery after a specialist finally diagnosed the black horn-like growth was actually skin cancer – that had been sprouting out of the top of his head for nine months.
The 89-year-old was taken to hospital after a nasty fall on the day of his wife’s funeral last August, but when the cut on his head was healing, the huge growth developed.
Tough George ignored the swelling lump until February, when the pain became so much he went to his GP, who sent him home with paracetamol, despite having a black, egg-sized lump on his scalp.
George, from Gillingham, Kent, says he went to his local doctors, The Railside Surgery, twice before he was sent to a specialist.
He said: “I saw a different doctor the second time and they took one look at it and told me it was too bad for them to deal with.
“The next I knew I had a call from the plastic surgery department at Queen Victoria Hospital in East Grinstead.”
Retired civil servant George slipped in his daughter’s bathroom last August and cut his head open, and after patching him up, doctors sent him home.
Since then, the wound has gradually grown in size, and when he eventually went to the doctor, three months ago, it was the size of an egg and growing.
After the doctor sent him home with painkillers, he says, he tried to deal with it as best he could, but the lump kept getting larger and more painful.
He claims the advice was repeated at two further visits until a new doctor sent him to see dermatology experts at the Community Living Health Centre in Gillingham, who referred him to Queen Victoria Hospital.
The hospital arranged for Mr Hobbs to see a specialist during a weekly visit to Medway Maritime Hospital.
The grandfather-of-three says he was told last week by a specialist that he urgently needs to go under the knife.
He said: “I’m furious that they didn’t take this seriously to start with. It’s really causing me a lot of discomfort.
“The specialist at Medway told me I should never have been told to take paracetamol for it.
“They were amazed it had been allowed to get this bad and said I should have been sent to them immediately.”
George, who is currently also recovering from bladder cancer, is worried about going under the knife again.
He added: “They’re worried because it’s not clear how deep it goes.
“They say if it’s grown upwards they should be able to remove it but if it’s grown downwards it’s more serious.
“I really am very apprehensive and haven’t been able to sleep very well.
“They say they should be able to see me at East Grinstead in the next week.”
Medway Clinical Commissioning Group is a group of 55 GP practices from across the Medway Towns, responsible for planning and buying local NHS services.
Director of primary care transformation Tracy Rouse said: “We are sorry to hear of Mr Hobbs’ experience.
“As the CCG does not hold any patient data, we would advise him to submit a complaint via email so we can fully investigate the matter.”