Glimmer of hope for triple hernia patient after 4-year fight for operation on the NHS

ITV Granada Reports journalist Mel Barham spoke to Winston Baldwin.

A former dairy farmer from Crewe, who has been fighting for an operation on the NHS for the last four years, has finally been given a glimmer of hope.

Winston Baldwin, 74, has been living with a triple hernia since 2019.

His treatment was delayed during covid, and last year he was told it was so advanced that the hernia was now inoperable.

But after seeing his story on Granada Reports, two surgeons from Arrowe Park hospital on the Wirral got in touch with Winston, and say they can operate.

"I could've gone through the floor with excitement," Winston told ITV News. "Other surgeons have found many excuses why they didn't want to do it or weren't prepared to do it, but it can be done.

"Altogether I've seen about eight or nine surgeons, both private and NHS, and you build yourself up when you're going to see someone, and then they say they're not going to do it, it is a terrible feeling.

"I'm chuffed they're [Arrowe Park hospital] prepared to take me on and not dismiss me like other people have done."

Mr Baldwin is currently living in a care home in Crewe, unable to walk due to the size of the hernia and its impact on his body.

"I feel let down, [an operation] should've been done before covid, and nobody wanted to operate during covid, and after covid it had really grown."

The surgeons at Arrowe Park hospital, Mr Ciaran Walsh and Mr Greg Simpson, saw Winston's story featured on Granada Reports and got in touch with him to offer to see him.

He's since been assessed by them and passed for surgery. He's now waiting for a date for the operation.

"If I don't have the operation, the surgeon said I won't go the distance, it will burst, you'll be dead within an hour.

"There's light at the end of the tunnel, there's an operation in the offing and I can't wait to be able to walk down the street again. I want to be back farming again."

Two surgeons from Arrowe Park Hospital have offered Winston Baldwin a lifeline as they offer to operate on his 'inoperable' triple hernia Credit: ITV News

Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Trust's Medical Director, Dr Nikki Stevenson told ITV News, "I am pleased to hear about Mr. Winston Baldwin's positive experience with our surgeons, Mr. Ciaran Walsh and Mr. Greg Simpson, who have offered their clinical expertise in order to help.

"I wish him well for his forthcoming procedure. At Wirral University Teaching Hospital, we are committed to the best outcomes in the well-being and treatment of our patients, and we seek always to deliver the highest standards of care.”

What is a hernia?

A hernia occurs when an internal part of the body pushes through a weakness in the muscle or surrounding tissue wall.

A hernia usually develops between your chest and hips and can cause a swelling or lump in your tummy (abdomen) or groin.

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