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News & Media

Media Release

Date: 10 January 2024

Put your hands together for the RUH's surgical team

More than 200 patients at the Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust have now had hand surgery in the hospital's Trauma Assessment Unit (TAU) under local anaesthetic – cutting waiting times and helping patients to get back home more quickly.

The hand surgery team standing in front of balloons spelling out the number 200

In January 2023 the TAU team launched same-day hand surgery for patients, operations that would otherwise need to be carried out in main day surgery.

Operations take place under a local anaesthetic and can be used to treat conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome and skin lesions.

Last week, the surgery team celebrated treating it's 200th patient – exactly a year to the day that hand operations were launched in TAU.

Gemma Chambers, 29, a cleaner from Bath, was the surgery team's 200th patient, having surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome on her right hand.

Gemma said: "Having carpal tunnel syndrome feels like having pins and needles all the time, with tingling shooting pains. At times it's so painful I go to bed crying. It affects your everyday life, even gripping a hot drink is dangerous when it's really flared up.

"To be offered such quick, efficient and caring treatment is amazing. The whole team here is fantastic too.

"It was really quick and easy. I came in, got ready, and then the procedure took just a matter of minutes. In a bit I'll be on my way home.

"This should make a real difference for me. Eventually I want to set up my own cleaning company to work for myself, and now I can focus on the future.

"Thank you to everyone in the department."

Karen Driscoll, Deputy Divisional Director of Operations for Surgery, said: "We are delighted that in just one year we have been able to successfully carry out hand surgery on more than 200 people in TAU.

"This new way of working has reduced waiting times for patients and freed up space in our day surgery theatres for more complex cases.

"The feedback we have had from the people we care for has been so positive, which is fantastic.

"I'd like to thank colleagues from across the RUH who have worked to so hard to make this happen."


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