I am writing to provide a testimonial for Dr Bodani who I have come to know quite well over the past two years.
I need to provide a little context in order to appreciate how outstanding his input has been to a terrible case – that of my wife who is dying of Cortico Basal Degeneration.
Six years ago my wife experienced problems with walking and feeling in her left, dominant side and – as we had private medical insurance – she was quickly referred to various Bupa/Spire consultants who arranged some routine scans but could find nothing organically wrong with her. She was referred to psychiatric services – privately – and underwent CBT and was medicated for depression and anxiety.
She was unresponsive – her symptoms worsening – and we went back to the neurologists (we saw two and a neuro-surgeon) who tested her again (including tests at The Royal Free and MRIs at The Wellington) and this time we were emphatically told that hers was a functional disorder needing only a change in her mind to recover fully.
My medical insurance concluded that they could no longer pay out what seemed a chronic case so I started paying for all the consultants from this point onwards.She became steadily more ill, losing the ability to stand; needing a wheelchair and then suffering two major falls at home resulting in a broken clavicle on the second occasion.
At this point our private psychologist who we’d taken on for 9 months – said that she did not believe her approach was having a positive effect and suggested I might see another Doctor who she had met at a medical meeting – Mayur Bodani. She thought he had had direct experience and success in rehabilitating patients with severe psychosomatic illness.
I contacted Mayur via the web and he called me in September 2016.
I immediately was impressed. There was no demand that I book a 20 minute £250 initial consultation at his surgery in Kent. Indeed when I described my wife’s terrible suffering and disability he offered to come to our home in Hertfordshire – to interview and assess her and to read her case notes.
He duly came – agreed that the tests done strongly suggested that it was a functional illness – but concluded that the way to restore my wife’s mobility would be via intensive neuro-physiotherapy combined with psychological input and oversight via a qualified doctor (Mayur).
I asked Mayur to take my wife on and he explained that the only way to achieve this would be for us to come to Kent. We rented a house in Kent – Sevenoaks – at the beginning of January 2017. Mayur even picked me up at the station on a fact find and took me to visit premises that we might rent. He would accept no payment for any of this. He was only concerned with helping a family that had been devastated by illness.
His behaviour was as exemplary as it is unusual (none of the waiting we are all used to to see consultants in the NHS and none of the over commerciality one expects in so much private medicine).
Suffice to say, after three months of intensive neuro-physio and counselling, my wife did not recover. In March 2017 he reviewed her and concluded that there was a real illness that had been missed. He said that there was no point staying in Kent and we returned to Hertfordshire.
However, he referred my wife to see a neurologist – who, after several months and a day admission to Kings’ – concluded that she is suffering from an advanced stage of CBD.
Without Mayur Bodani we would still be in the wilderness having received terrible advice (“do not allow your wife to believe she is really ill or she will never recover”) which damaged my marriage irreparably and which led my wife to attempt suicide. Without Mayur we would not have been able to move almost without inconvenience to Kent and to access his brilliant and dedicated team.
Mayur is clearly unusual, perhaps a maverick. But I have seldom met a person more empathetic nor concerned to do the right thing, even if that means allowing a patient to have his mobile phone number and to be available in his private time. These are unusual things but they are driven by the highest values. He barely would accept payment as he felt that we had been treated so badly by some of the services we’d been to in the past.
He was utterly professional; brilliant in his ability to question and interrogate his subject matter but always kind. I cannot recommend him highly enough.