Wrexham man on heart transplant list urges families to discuss organ donation

Wrexham.com > News

Job : Tue 15 February 2022

Families across Wales are urged to have a ‘heart to heart’ about organ donation.

There are over 300 people, including over 40 children, currently on the waiting list for heart transplants.

While heart transplants have continued throughout the pandemic, with only 7% less in 2020/21 compared to the previous year, the waiting list for heart transplants has increased by 85% during the last decade, increasing from 169 patients in March 2012 to 313. in March 2021.

Ryan Gabb, 30, from Wrexham, has been on the heart transplant waiting list since May 2018.

His was turned upside down in September 2017 when he suddenly became very ill.

“I hadn’t been feeling well for a few weeks, just general fatigue and flu-like symptoms that I couldn’t get rid of,” Ryan explained.

“It was getting progressively worse and I was also starting to get short of breath.

“Knowing something was wrong, I borrowed a friend’s Fitbit to check my heart rate and it was over 100, I knew I had to get checked out, so I left work early and I went to the doctor.”

“The GP sent me straight to the local hospital where I was told I had dilated cardiomyopathy and would probably need a heart transplant.”

“I couldn’t believe what I was hearing and I was in complete shock, I knew I was not well but I didn’t expect anything so bad.”

Ryan was monitored over the next few days, but five days later was airlifted to Manchester after suffering cardiogenic shock.

He was added to the urgent cardiac waiting list, but then had an LVAD – emergency heart pump – fitted before being listed again for a transplant in May 2018.

Ryan explains: “I’m doing pretty well with the LVAD at the moment but waiting for a transplant can be difficult, there’s a constant need to have my phone with me and I need regular power to keep my LVAD batteries can be charged.

“The worry about power outages is always in the back of my mind.

“I was told that I might have a long wait for a heart that is hard to hear in my mid-twenties. I had to finish my job as it was quite physical.

“I hope the coming year brings some normality and I also hope more people will discuss organ donation with their family and record their decision.

“You never know when or who might need that help.”

“I was a regular blood donor and also joined the NHS organ donor register when I was 18. I thought both were important but I didn’t expect that. my life is changing so much.”

Even though organ donation law has now moved to an opt-out system in England, Wales and Scotland, many people are still unaware that families will always be consulted before organ donation. .

While families are more likely, and find it easier, to support donation when they know it is what their loved one wanted, only 43% of the UK population have recorded their decision on the organ donor register of the NHS and only 38% say they have shared their organ donation decision with their family.

Now families in Wales are invited to have a conversation with each other about organ donation.

Anthony Clarkson, Director of Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: ‘Thousands of people across the UK are waiting for the call that a donor has been found to save or transform their lives, and hundreds of them need a heart transplant.”

“We encourage everyone to have this heart to heart now.”

“Talk to your family and tell them your organ donation decision, let them be certain of that. And make sure you know what they would like too, so you can support their decision.

For more information or to register your organ donation decision, please visit: www.organdonation.nhs.uk or call 0300 123 23 23. NHS app users can also use the service to register, check or update their organ donation decision.

Did you spot something? You have a story? Send a Facebook message | A direct message to Twitter | Email News@Wrexham.com

Source link

Comments are closed.