Fabio-lous for saving my man
Couple name baby after life-saving heart op surgeon
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 honeymoon in the Maldives when his heart first failed.
After being treated locally, the keen runner – who had been fighting fit before the honeymoon – was flown to Harefield Hospital, where he stayed for nearly a year before receiving a transplant.
Now his wife Lauren has given birth to the couple’s first child, despite having been told Mr Britton’s medication might have left him infertile.
The couple gave their son Frank the middle name Fabio – after Mr Britton’s heart surgeon, Fabio De Robertis.
Mrs Britton, 34, said: “He’s a very inspiring and amazing person. All the staff at Harefield are fantastic, but it would have been a bit weird if we’d called him Harefield.”
Mr Britton initially thought he was suffering with food poisoning, or a hangover, when he became ill in 2012.
Mrs Britton called for a doctor, who put him on a drip, but it became clear more was needed.
The couple, who live in Harefield, took a boat to the nearest hospital, where doctors found Mr Britton’s heart rate was 200 beats per minute.
He was sedated, given defibrillator shocks and warned he could die if not taken to a specialist within 24 hours.
Mr Britton, a project manager for InterContinental Hotels, was flown to Thailand and placed on life support for two weeks.
Once Mr Britton was stable enough to fly home he was taken to Harefield Hospital, where he was diagnosed with myocarditis, inflammation of the heart muscle, which is normally caused by a viral infection. Only then did he learn he had suffered six heart attacks.
He was fitted with a pacemaker and defibrillator before leaving the Hill End Road hospital. But seven weeks later he collapsed and had to be readmitted for open heart surgery.
In September 2013, a donor heart was found and he was able to leave hospital in November the same year.
Mrs Britton discovered she was pregnant a month later, which she called a ‘miracle’. She has written a book titled Strength in Strangers. It costs £1.99 at Amazon.co.uk, with proceeds going to the hospital.
DIED SIX TIMES: Andrew Britton and his wife Lauren, both 34 and from Harefield, have named their newborn baby boy after the ‘inspirational’ surgeon who saved Mr Britton’s life