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Young woman at risk of infertility ‘let down’ after operation cancelled

Her surgery was cancelled due to a lack of bed space amid winter pressures.

A young woman suffering from a condition that can cause infertility has said she feels “really let down” after her surgery was cancelled at the last minute.

Megan Louise Mead, 20, has struggled with “constant pain” from endometriosis in her womb for the past eight years and was scheduled for an NHS operation on Monday.

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Megan Mead (Handout/PA)

But the case handler, from Andover, Hampshire, was called last Friday and told it would not go ahead owing to a lack of beds at Salisbury Hospital in Wiltshire.

Ms Mead told the Press Association: “It’s got to the point where we’re thinking about doing it privately. It’s a bit of a hit to the heart.

“Everyone was like ‘are you nervous?’ beforehand but I was really excited. I just cried when I got the call, it gave me that really bad gut feeling. I felt really let down.

“I’m in constant pain. When it’s really bad it’s like spasms in my stomach where you go stiff and can’t move, it affects everywhere. It’s like weeds and has grown around my bowel too now.”

The condition was repeatedly misdiagnosed as heavy period pain, irritable bowel syndrome, and even appendicitis in the past, Ms Mead claimed, before a change of GP identified the true cause of her discomfort.

Ms Mead said she saw a consultant in October and was told her case was “urgent” and that she should have the procedure within four to six weeks.

But winter pressures at the hospital meant her surgery date of January 8 was scrapped and she has not been given another.

Ms Mead, who has had a partner for the past two years, said she has taken 21 sick days in the past 12 months, is frequently unable to concentrate, and often has to leave social occasions to rest.

She went on: “At the moment I’m taking three medications to stop it, and it can make you infertile, which is not really something you want to hear at 20.

“I know it’s not the NHS’s fault but it’s the same time every year that this happens, they should know what to expect. Going private is on the cards to be honest.

“I want to be normal again because it’s an invisible illness that affects everything.”

A Salisbury Foundation Trust spokesman said: “The Trust has worked closely with its partners to put in place plans to help deal with additional demands on health services during the winter period.

“The hospital is currently very busy and the Trust has been reviewing non-urgent operations and has had to cancel procedures where appropriate. We are very sorry when this happens and we apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

“We will continue to review the situation and we will look to reschedule operations as soon as we can.”

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