COLUMN: What’s up Doc?

‘What’s Up Doc’ is a health column in association with Spire Gatwick Park, your local private hospital, which gives you the opportunity to ask questions regarding general health and wellbeing. Answers will be provided weekly from specialist consultants at Spire Gatwick Park Hospital. If it’s a long-standing illness or simply a worry which you would like to get off your mind then send your questions to Spire Gatwick Park is a private hospital located in Horley, Surrey providing a range of treatments, from orthopaedic to ophthalmic, ENT to cosmetic. You do not need private medical insurance to use Spire Gatwick Park Hospital facilities and patients can get appointments within 2 weeks.

Dear Spire, after seeing your great column in the Crawley Observer I hope you can give me some advice. Running has been a big part of my life for the past 8 years and I am desperate to know the extent of the damage to my knee after the nasty fall during an adventure race. I fell from a 9ft wall landing on uneven ground on my left leg my knee jolted. My concern is, even if my doctor does say I can have a scan I have been told I could wait some time on the NHS. If I was to come direct to Spire Gatwick Park hospital how soon could I book a scan and how much would I have to pay?

Mark, Crawley

Dear Mark, the best diagnostic imaging to investigate your knee problem is an MRI scan. This would show meniscal damage (torn cartilage), cruciate and collateral ligament injuries, tendinitis, muscle strains, bone bruising, and abnormalities with the joint surfaces such as osteoarthritis. The scanner is a powerful magnetic field which does not use radiation. MRI scans are painless procedures and a full explanation is given prior to the examination.

A knee scan would take 20 – 30 minutes and you can listen to music on CD or your iPod. The scan would be conducted by an experienced radiographer and reported on by a consultant radiologist within our department. We can normally offer appointments within 1 – 3 days and the report would be available within a few days after the scan. At the Spire Gatwick Park imaging department we have static CT and MRI scanners, ultrasound, x-ray, fluoroscopy and echocardiogram facilities.

All imaging tests require a referral from your doctor which can be faxed or e-mailed directly to us. To discuss booking an appointment and to obtain a quote, please call the imaging department on 01293 778 953, for faxing referrals call 01293 822 837.

David Hillier, Lead CT / MRI Radiographer

Remember to keep posting in your questions to the experts at Spire Gatwick Park Hospital, who can help answer any health matters on your mind. Contact the hospital either by email:, or write to: ‘What’s up Doc’, Spire Gatwick Park Hospital, Povey Cross Road, Horley, Surrey RH6 0BB.