Triathlete names son after surgeon who saved his life
Man who fell ill while on honeymoon in Maldives ‘died’ six times
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