'I don't think life would have been worth living' - first patient undergoes new heart treatment at Ipswich Hospital
PUBLISHED: 13:58 27 September 2018 | UPDATED: 15:00 27 September 2018
A 76-year-old who enjoyed jive dancing before her angina left her short of breath has become the first patient to have new heart treatment at Ipswich Hospital.
Teresa Lewins, from Felixstowe, has undergone rotablation treatment to break down calcium in the arteries and reduce the pain caused by angina.
She said: “If I had not had the procedure I don’t think life would have been worth living.
Teresa first noticed pain in her left arm when she was walking and suffered months of discomfort as the condition was misdiagnosed.
“I had the pain for five or six months and it made me feel depressed, I couldn’t walk as fast as I used to and I got out of breath easily when dancing.
“The first two doctors I saw couldn’t help me. One thought I had tennis elbow and another just gave me paracetamol - that annoyed me, I can buy painkillers but I needed real help.”
The pain meant Teresa struggled with her regular jive dancing sessions.
Eventually, after seeing a third doctor, she was diagnosed with angina, a condition which sees reduced blood flow to the heart muscles and acts a warning sign for a possible future heart attack.
From there she was offered the rotablation treatment, making her the first to undergo the procedure at Ipswich Hospital.
She remained awake during the procedure, which involved a small plastic tube being inserted into the wrist before a rotablation drill was then used to break up the calcium in her arteries.
Teresa hasn’t looked back since.
“It was so smooth, I was in, out and shook about and it was done.
“As soon as I had it done I felt on top of the world, I can’t thank Ipswich Hospital enough.”
She is now back dancing with her partner Keith Creek, 71.
“I love to dance, as soon as I hear Elvis or Buddy Holly I have to tap my feet and I meet so many lovely people doing it.
“If I lost it, it just wouldn’t bare thinking about.”
David Bloore, Cardiology lead at Ipswich, who performed the procedure on Teresa said: “It’s a great result and a result which we would not be able to achieve without this piece of equipment and technique.”
Two Ipswich Hospital patients have so far received rotablation treatment.