Triath­lete names son after sur­geon who saved his life

Man who fell ill while on hon­ey­moon in Mal­dives ‘died’ six times

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Jo-Anne Rowney jo-anne.rowney@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

A TRIATH­LETE who suf­fered mul­ti­ple heart at­tacks and ‘died’ six times has named his first-born child after the sur­geon who saved him.

An­drew Brit­ton, 34, was on his dream hon­ey­moon in the Mal­dives when his heart first failed.

The keen run­ner was rushed to hos­pi­tal, where he stayed for nearly a year be­fore even­tu­ally re­ceiv­ing a heart trans­plant.

Now his wife Lau­ren, a for­mer Che­sham Gram­mar School pupil, has given birth to the cou­ple’s first child, de­spite hav­ing been told they might never be able to con­ceive be­cause of Mr Brit­ton’s med­i­ca­tion.

The cou­ple, who lived in Den­ham at the time, have given their son Frank the mid­dle name Fabio – after heart sur­geon, Fabio De Rober­tis.

Mr Brit­ton was fit and healthy and had re­cently com­pleted a half marathon when he be­came un­well in 2012. The cou­ple thought he had a hang­over, not know­ing he was about to suf­fer six heart at­tacks in two days.

Mrs Brit­ton, 34, said: “I wasn’t re­ally wor­ried at this point be­cause I didn’t know he was dy­ing.”

Mrs Brit­ton called for a doc­tor, who put him on a re­hy­dra­tion drip.

They later recorded his heart rate at 200 beats per minute – more than dou­ble that of a nor­mal, healthy adult.

Mr Brit­ton was flown to Eng­land on an emer­gency med­i­cal jet and placed on life support for two weeks.

It was only then he learned he had suf­fered six heart at­tacks.

He was fit­ted with a pace­maker and de­fib­ril­la­tor.

Seven weeks later he col­lapsed and un­der­went eight hours of open heart surgery.

He stayed at the hos­pi­tal for months while wait­ing for a heart trans­plant.

Mrs Brit­ton said: “You just don’t know if he’s go­ing to make it. It was a very, very dif­fi­cult time, but you just have to stay pos­i­tive and the staff there were great; they re­ally kept him go­ing and kept us pos­i­tive.”

Mr Brit­ton re­cov­ered well, leav­ing the hos­pi­tal in Novem­ber. Mrs Brit­ton dis­cov­ered she was preg­nant with Frank a month later.

She said: “We were ad­vised that it was fairly un­likely we would have chil­dren be­cause of An­drew’s med­i­ca­tion, so it was a real mir­a­cle for us re­ally.”

An­drew Brit­ton and wife Lau­ren with their baby boy

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‘MIR­A­CLE’:

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