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UHNM patient thanks heart failure team for new lease of life

A 46-year-old electrician who had a life-saving heart transplant after specialists at University Hospitals of North Midlands spotted he was in heart failure is on the road to recovery and excited to be back in the kitchen, cooking, for the first time in two years.  

Daniel Smith was admitted to the Coronary Care Unit at Royal Stoke University Hospital following a routine appointment after consultants saw he was seriously unwell and needed urgent treatment.

Daniel, of Nottingham was diagnosed with heart failure in 2012 but his condition had seriously deteriorated and required high level support for two weeks which included intra-aortic balloon pump therapy that helps to pump blood around the body.

Once care was enhanced and Daniel was in a stable condition he was transferred to Royal Papworth Hospital for a lifesaving heart transplant. 

Daniel, who is a year into his recovery, returned to the Coronary Care Unit to thank staff for their care. He said: “It feels amazing to be standing here with a clear mind. I was very unwell when I was last here and lots of things that happened didn’t seem real. It is nice to be back on the ward and to get some closure.

“I would like to thank everyone at UHNM who cared for me during my stay. Without them I wouldn’t be here. When you have seen how hard everyone involved in your care works, under at times, very difficult circumstances, it leaves you with enormous respect and admiration, not just for the staff treating you but NHS employees as a whole. I will always have memories of the care I received and know that all the many patients that go on to be looked after by these amazing people are in very good hands.”

Daniel is now hopeful for the future and what it holds for him, he added: “I absolutely love to cook; I've just recently got back into the kitchen after almost two years. I plan to get out on my bike when the sunshine returns and I actually managed to go out on a solo wild camp which I've wanted to do for a very long time. The world is my oyster now so who knows what activities I'll get involved in its quite exciting!”

Marie Pegg, Coronary Care Ward Manager at UHNM, said: “Daniel received high level nursing care with us on the Coronary Care Unit prior to his transfer to Papworth for a heart transplant.  It was really good to see how well he was looking after being so acutely unwell when he was with us on the unit. I want to thank Daniel for taking the time to come and see us.”

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