Skip to main content Skip to footer

999: Critical Condition| Patient discovered with perforated bowel after his heart stopped

A 43-year-old stock control supervisor was rushed to University Hospitals of North Midlands after suffering a cardiac arrest and later discovered his bowel had perforated is to feature in the latest episode of 999: Critical Condition.

Robert Walker from Newcastle-under-Lyme had life-saving surgery at Royal Stoke University Hospital following a cardiac arrest at home.

He had been feeling unwell, suffering from stomach pains and generally feeling unwell until he pains became too much and he phoned 999.

Today Robert said: “The pains I was having in my stomach were excruciating to the point where I was curled up on my living room floor with my knees to my chest. I knew something was seriously wrong so that is when I called for an ambulance.”

Once the paramedics arrived at Robert’s house he went into cardiac arrest and received CPR before being transferred to the Major Trauma Centre at Royal Stoke University Hospital where he was initially treated for a cardiac arrest.

Following an emergency CT scan doctors discovered his bowel had perforated and that he required urgent surgery to resolve the issue.

He added: “When I was told I had a perforated bowel it made sense why my stomach pains were so bad. Once they told me I would have a central line fitted I don’t remember much else. There is about ten days where I am unsure what actually happened. Everyone was amazing to me the care was so brilliant, from A&E to the wards.”

Robert spent two-and-a-half-weeks in intensive care with four of those days being in an induced coma, undergoing two operations to remove half of his bowel and an ileostomy was created to form a stoma. Robert was discharged after ten weeks and is now recovering at home.

He said: “It’s been a whirlwind over the last few months but I am slowly getting back to myself. It is a lot to come to terms with. I am building myself back up and even went out with my best friend to a tea room in the Peak District; it was amazing to be out.”

Roberts’s story will be screened on Channel 5 at 9pm on Wednesday 14 June in the critically acclaimed documentary which is filmed exclusively at Royal Stoke University Hospital.