I first came into contact with Ben Hornung earlier in 2020 as a referral linked to another health issue that required an initial telephone consultation with a colorectal surgeon. It was agreed that the other issue was more pressing, and with the reassurance I needed from Ben that there was no immediate intervention needed, I was told I would be followed up later in 2020. Ben made contact as promised and we agreed that a sensible approach was to have Ben and the team take a look to check out what I thought was a minor issue.

A date was quickly arranged and I was admitted as a day case expecting a quick turnaround and to be discharged with a clean bill of health. This was not the case, and unfortunately the procedure identified a tumour in my colorectal region. I was devastated, but Ben provided all the reassurance needed during a shocking and scary time. He immediately arranged a CT scan on the same day, with further tests and scans to be arranged. I went home in a state of shock to break the news to my family, not knowing what to expect in the coming weeks. From this point forward Ben and the team put the wheels in motion, and boy did they get this sorted.

During the next few days and weeks I was to have an MRI scan, a virtual colonoscopy CT, and discussions with nurses and others that would be involved with my care. Ben was in regular contact during this period and on the phone providing regular updates on the results of the scans and biopsies. He also updated me on the discussions taking place regarding my possible care and how this would work, factoring in my current health situation that would need careful management prior to surgery. At every stage Ben provided a reassuring ear, calling when promised and providing what I can only say was the clearest and most honest view of what was happening. It was great getting these updates as this not only reassured me but also all my family and friends.

A provisional date of admission was given to me but before Ben had even rung me to confirm the date his team at Spire Manchester Hospital had been in touch. When Ben did ring he stated they were all working hard to get me admitted ASAP and to get the op done and dusted so that I could be home and recovered by Christmas. A further call from Ben confirmed that according to the MRI and CT scans the tumour had not spread so this was really great news. The multi-disciplinary team meeting had discussed my case and a plan for my care. The next stage was to get the operation done and dusted.

Consultant General and Colorectal Surgeon, Mr Ben Hornung

I was admitted 30th November for my pre-op procedures, including the need for me to have an IV infusion of heparin with my op scheduled for 2nd December. The day arrived and Ben was his caring and compassionate self. He filled me with confidence that I was in safe hands and so it proved. The op was a success and Ben phoned my wife sharing the good news that the tumour was out and I could now concentrate on my convalescence.

The team in the critical care unit could not have provided any better support and care. During the first few days they were on hand to help not only with my care but my mental health and overall wellbeing as well. Bev, Francis and Frank to name a few were there to look after me and they did a great job. A few days later I was moved to my own room on Ward 2 where my care continued with Leslie and Grace, to name just two, being absolutely brilliant. I was able to go home 7th December. Each day whilst in Spire Manchester Hospital, I was visited by Ben at least once and more often than not twice a day to check up on my progress, and all was good.

The post-op recovery is going really well, with the wound now settled and healing nicely. The best news was just around the corner when the phone rang. It was Ben - he initially apologised for the late call on a Friday evening, but when he told me that the tumour was out, the area was clear and I would not require any further treatment, it was the best early Christmas present anyone could get.

I have a follow up with Ben to check on my progress, but I hope this will be the last time I see this wonderful man for the next year, or at least until my next check up. I wanted to say a massive thank you to a truly amazing person along with his fantastic team. From the very dark days of my initial procedure and diagnosis to now, Ben has been wonderful. He is calm, professional and totally reassuring and should you ever be in the position to need a colorectal referral, Ben Hornung should be at the top of your list. Thank you Ben and your great team.