Heart attack man thanks life savers
AN IPSWICH man who became the 100th patient to receive a new clot-busting heart drug has today thanked the paramedics who helped to save his life.Andy Fowkes and his wife Eve, of Fletcher Road, had settled down for a quiet night in front of the TV on New Year's Eve, but things took a dramatic turn when Eastenders began.
AN IPSWICH man who became the 100th patient to receive a new clot-busting heart drug has today thanked the paramedics who helped to save his life.
Andy Fowkes and his wife Eve, of Fletcher Road, had settled down for a quiet night in front of the TV on New Year's Eve, but things took a dramatic turn when Eastenders began.
Mr Fowkes, 41, said: "As soon as the music comes on, that's always my cue to go and do something else. I can't stand it.
"I got up and walked upstairs to check my e-mails, but when I got to the stairs I experienced this sudden breathlessness. It felt like I'd got three large men standing on my chest."
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Mr Fowkes, a train driver, was soon overcome with agonising pains and could do nothing but lay on the sofa and wait for an ambulance to arrive.
He said: "They were here within about five minutes and they were absolutely fantastic.
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"They were so calm and put me at my ease. I told them to just do what they had to and as soon as the thrombolysis needle went in I could feel the difference."
Thrombolysis treatment works by dissolving blood clots in the heart and the sooner a patient receives it, the better their chances of recovery. Ambulance crews have only been able to administer it themselves since the autumn.
Before then patients had to be taken to hospital and given the drug there which wasted valuable minutes.
Mr Fowkes spent five days in hospital after his attack and is now recuperating at home.
He contacted The Star after reading that the East Anglian Ambulance Trust had administered the 100th treatment to a 41-year-old man in Ipswich on New Year's Eve.
He said: "I just thought it must have been me and I wanted to say a big thank you to the ambulance crew and everyone at the hospital for the way they treated me.
"If anyone is unfortunate enough to have a heart attack and they find themselves being offered the thrombolysis treatment in the back of an ambulance, I would urge them to say 'yes' and get the needle in them as quickly as possible."
"Having the heart attack has really put things in to perspective, but with a change of diet and change of attitude I should make a full recovery."
Have you been helped by ambulance crews recently? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org