Cel­e­brat­ing the fes­tive sea­son

Heart at­tack vic­tim is home for Christ­mas

Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Dou­glas Dickie

A Cam­bus­lang woman who woke from a coma on Christ­mas Day has been able to spend this fes­tive sea­son with her loved ones.

Sa­man­tha Bell (32) suf­fered a heart at­tack dur­ing a rou­tine check-up at the Golden Ju­bilee Hos­pi­tal just days be­fore De­cem­ber 25 last year.

Staff at the hos­pi­tal rushed to her aid but she stayed in a coma un­til Christ­mas Day.

Her fam­ily, in­clud­ing boyfriend Lee Fo­ley (33), went through an ag­o­nis­ing wait by her bed­side be­fore she woke up

Sa­man­tha then spent two months in the hos­pi­tal re­cov­er­ing from her or­deal.

But her fam­ily helped her get over the dis­ap­point­ment of miss­ing out on Christ­mas by help­ing her cel­e­brate it in Fe­bru­ary.

Look­ing back on her or­deal, Sa­man­tha said: “I didn’t know where I was when I woke up in in­ten­sive care and had no mem­ory of the whole week be­fore but I recog­nised my boyfriend Lee as soon as I opened my eyes and he told me it was Christ­mas Day.

“It was a strange ex­pe­ri­ence but my two best friends did visit me and I don’t usu­ally see them on Christ­mas Day. It sounds cheesy but my friends and fam­ily all said it was their best Christ­mas present be­cause I was awake and able to talk to them.

“It was a dif­fi­cult time for my fam­ily, who de­cided to cel­e­brate Christ­mas with me in Fe­bru­ary when I was home from hos­pi­tal.

“It was really nice to be able to have a proper Christ­mas as it is meant to be spent, with loved ones.

“We dec­o­rated a tree, had Christ­mas din­ner and opened presents. It was a lovely thing to do since Christ­mas had been such a hard time for ev­ery­one.

“This year I’ve been really look­ing for­ward to Christ­mas. Lee and I have put up the Christ­mas tree and wrapped presents, which we were un­able to do to­gether last year.”

Sa­man­tha, who stays in Beech Cres­cent, suf­fers from car­diomy­opa­thy, a con­di­tion which af­fects the heart mus­cles.

She had been at­tend­ing the Scot­tish Na­tional Ad­vanced Heart Fail­ure Ser­vice ( SNAHFS) at the Golden Ju­bilee for 10 years be­fore re­ceiv­ing a heart trans­plant in 2011.

Ever since her heart at­tack Sa­man­tha has been back for reg­u­lar check-ups and hopes to re­turn to her job as a re­la­tion­ship man­ager with San­tander in 2016.

And she was full of praise for the staff at the hos­pi­tal who saved her life: “A lot of peo­ple don’t make it af­ter a car­diac ar­rest so I have been in­cred­i­bly lucky and ev­ery­body at the Golden Ju­bilee has been great this year.

“With­out the un­con­di­tional sup­port of my boyfriend Lee and the staff at SNAHFS I wouldn’t have made as much progress.

“I have started to no­tice a real dif­fer­ence in my health since my last visit to the Golden Ju­bilee and by the be­gin­ning of next year I hope to be back at work.

“I cur­rently go to a clinic at the hos­pi­tal ev­ery two weeks but soon I hope to be at the stage where I only need to visit once ev­ery six months.”

Mike Hig­gins, med­i­cal di­rec­tor at the Golden Ju­bilee, said: “We are a cen­tre of ex­cel­lence in heart dis­ease and, al­though she has had a dif­fi­cult year, I am glad to hear Sa­man­tha is making good progress.

“It is great to hear she was able to spend Christ­mas at home this year.”

Home for Christ­mas Sa­man­tha Bell and boyfriend Lee Fo­ley

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.