A Derby woman who suffers from chronic back discomfort says her injuries have left her confined to the house for the last ten years. Chanade Smith is a resident of the city’s centre, injured her back as she tried to move an enormous rabbit hutch to her home in the year 2013.

She’s left her home three times since then. And, as she says, she’s not any closer to an answer a decade after.

She told me: “I want my old life back. I’d love to shop. I also miss going to town, believe it not. I long for fresh air. I’m very confined and shy. I feel like a prisoner within my home. I feel like I’m in a state of isolation every day.”

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When she was fit and active Smith’s weight has gone from 10 to 17 and-a-half stones in the last decade, and has only gotten worse according to her. An upcoming blood sample, conducted by a district nurse in her home, showed she had prediabetes. This means that her blood sugar levels are elevated but not enough to be able to diagnose type 2 diabetes. However, it is an indication.

The only way she gets to experience her surroundings is when walks onto the balcony. Her sole source of entertainment is her family of pets that include an hamster, a dog two guinea pigs seven huge snails.

There’s no family left and those with whom she does speak to must either meet her or talk to her through WhatsApp and Zoom.

The incident happened in spring 2013, when Ms. Smith states that a large rabbit hutch smashed into her lower back when she carried it around with her former partner. The collision led to her back to swell and she was thrown over twice in discomfort. The pain subsided after 15 minutes, and she did not need to call for an ambulance.

After a few weeks however, and with the “vice-like” discomfort recurring often, Ms. Smith visited her doctor in the Brook Medical Centre, in Kedleston Road, and was prescribed anti-inflammatory and pain medications.

It was a while before Ms. Smith claimed she was seeking more assistance but insists she was just given more medications. After seven years Ms. Smith declares she’s not any closer to being better.

When the pandemic struck the area, she received an invitation from a friend to go to two vaccinations for Covid-19, as well as a fourth lift for cervical screening. At the similar timeframe, she was advised to an MRI scan at the Royal Derby Hospital but said she was unable to be able to attend due to contracting Covid.

She says that her appointment has not been changed. She has continued to make home appointments to see her back however because she had been to her GP appointment before she claims she was informed that she’d have to go back in person.

Ms. Smith says she’s not talking to the person who had access to the car but could not pay for public transportation or taxis during the crisis of cost-of-living. The ongoing and intense discomfort is still a concern and Ms. Smith claims that, according to Smith her doctor, the different prescribed medications she is taking aren’t working.

She’s said that she’s not had a scan, nor was diagnosed with her condition by an extensive exam.

She stated: “Before the accident, I would go out each day. After the accident, I’ve never been able to get out of my door. I’m required to have someone else more than three times a day to let the dog outside. I’m not able to get down the stairs. My neighbor next door gets the bins away for me.”

The food and pet items are delivered directly to her home. Her prescriptions are sent to the GP office, and then posted it with Royal Mail and the electronic prescription service Pharmacy2U.

In the beginning of the year, she made the move away from Brook Medical Centre, in Kedleston Road, to Friar Gate Surgery in an effort to speed up the process. She’s been referred online physiotherapy, but says this “made her feel worse” and has recently been sent to a neuroskeletal specialist but claims that it’s due to the fact that she’s “kicked off a snark.”

A spokesperson from the Derby and Derbyshire Integrated Care Board on behalf of the Brook Medical Centre and Friar Gate Surgery stated: “GP practices in Derby and Derbyshire always collaborate with their patients in order to provide the most effective and appropriate treatment for their patients.

“We are unable to reveal any specifics of the relationship between a patient and the GP practice because we want to safeguard the confidentiality of their medical care. There are many ways that patients can use to share their feedback or make an appeal if they want.”

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