Dad of four faced 10-hour ambulance wait after bowel cancer misdiagnosis

A father-of-four who faced a 10-hour ambulance wait before being left in a hospital waiting room for 21 hours has been diagnosed with bowel cancer just months after doctors claimed he was suffering from a “sickness bug”.

Matt Jones, 38, began experiencing extreme cramping along with diarrhoea and nausea in May and decided to visit his GP hoping for answers.

After taking a blood test, doctors told Matt he was anaemic and may be suffering from a sickness bug. But just weeks later, the stomach cramps left him in “crippling” pain and needing to visit A&E.

His wife Nicki, 37, who was pregnant with twins at the time, called an ambulance for him to be told there was a 10-hour wait and that it would be quicker for them to drive to the hospital.

Thankfully, their neighbour was able to give them a lift but upon arriving, Matt and his heavily pregnant wife faced a 21-hour wait to be seen before finally being admitted on May 23.

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After a number of tests, Matt, from Kent, was diagnosed with colitis and ultimately discharged with plans to perform a colonoscopy in four weeks time.

On July 6, two months after initially being admitted into hospital, Matt was diagnosed with stage three bowel cancer just weeks after his wife had given birth to twins.

Speaking to, Matt’s sister Claire Henderson, 32, slammed the “unbelievable” treatment from doctors that left him in agony for months.

She said: “He was crippled over in pain and thought the best scenario was to go to the hospital. Doctors had fobbed him off for weeks and with the added pressure of the twins arrival, Matt wanted to get to the bottom of what was going on. It was just one thing after another. We’re such a close-knit family and it’s been such a hard time for us all.”

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Matt, who was forced to take time off work due to the pain, added: “On discharge from hospital, the colonscopy appointment was arranged for four weeks time meaning I had to endure this pain and agony for another month.

“In between this time, Nicki gave birth to our beautiful twin daughters Esme and Isla which was an added distraction for me but this journey had been a life changing time for us as a family. I had the colonscopy on June 28 where a tumour was discovered and they took biopsies.

“On July 6, I was told the devastating news that I had stage three bowel cancer. I hardly had time to process this as I began to feel another lump appearing. This was then confirmed as another tumour.”

Matt was admitted to William Harvey Hospital on July 11 where he underwent bowel surgery on July 12 to remove the tumour.”

He is now waiting for chemotherapy which has been delayed due to his weight loss as a result of the illness.

Sister Claire added: “They’ve managed to cut out what they think is the tumour but because it went further than the bowel, it’s going to need chemotherapy. Everything is in line for the treatment but where he’s lost so much weight, he needs to be fitter to handle it.

“He’s not been able to do anything with the twins in regards to feeding and changing. We’ve all had to step in to support him and Nicki. He’s very thin and weak and has two older children aged six and four so it’s very hands-on.”

The family are fundraising to help with costs after Matt had to take leave from work. To donate, visit here.

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