"Heartfelt story about our AMAZING National Health Service"

About: Leeds General Infirmary / Cardiology

(as the patient),

In 1999 I had a triple Heart By-Pass and as a result I had been well, fit, walked in the Dales, played Golf, played football with my Grandsons - until a couple of months ago.

Then I started to feel a little discomfort with any vigorous exercise. A pain in the upper chest, moving into my throat, whilst climbing to the next hole on the golf course and pushing the trolley with suitcases to the doors at the airport.

On return from holiday I rang to book an appointment with my doctor. There were no appointments left that day at my usual surgery, but, when I mentioned 'chest pain on exercise' to the receptionist she immediately arranged an appointment at the surgery in progress by the same practice, but in the next village. Within an hour I was seen by a doctor (my own doctor as it turned out).

After examination he there and then dictated a letter to the cardiac department at Leeds General Infirmary. Within two weeks I was at the 'rapid access chest-pain clinic' in the Jubilee Building at LGI.

When wired up to the ECG machine and on the 'treadmill' it must have been obvious to the nurses that I had a serious problem, although I didn't feel much discomfort. The Consultant Registrar, Mr Somani, was called in to examine the 'traces' and the decision was taken to admit me to the Cardiac Ward 19 immediately - a bed was found within the hour.

A worrying time for my Wife, who had seen me walk into the 'treadmill' room and come out again in a wheelchair. The following evening the Angiogram proceedure was carried out and a 'Stent' fitted. One of the original by-pass grafts had started to 'fail'. The following day I was back home.

During all stages of consultation, diagnosis, preparation, treatment and nursing I never ceased to be impressed by the care, consideration and professionalism of all who looked after me. What a team!

I am now back playing Golf, walking in the Dales and, best of all, playing football with my grandchildren. My wife and I know that I have been very lucky. But haven't we got just the most AMAZING National Health Service?

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Response from Heather Simpson

Thank you for your comments, I am most pleased to hear that the services commissioned by NHS Leeds are of a high standard and this was reflected in your experiences both with the GP Practice and LGI. I will share your comments with the team at the LGI. I am delighted that you are now back playing football with the grandchildren!

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