Musgrove Park celebrates 10 years of Somerset’s emergency heart service - 05 December 2019

Musgrove Park celebrates 10 years of Somerset’s emergency heart service - 05 December 2019

191202 Emergency Heart Attack Service Team PhotoOver 2,000 patients across Somerset and the surrounding areas have benefited from lifesaving treatment by Musgrove Park Hospital’s emergency heart attack service.

The service celebrated its 10th birthday this month with staff and patients reflecting on the huge difference it has made to people’s lives.

When a patient has a heart attack they have a much greater chance of making a full recovery if the damage to their heart muscle is avoided by quick treatment so they are brought directly to the hospital’s cardiology unit by ambulance to be treated by a team of specialists.

The service also helps to get patients home quicker with the average person only needing to be in hospital for three days following a heart attack. Previously patients would have needed to be taken by ambulance to hospitals in Bristol or Exeter for treatment.

The service operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and is run by a team of cardiologists, nurses, radiographers and cardiac physiologists.

And the impact for patients is huge. Earlier in 2019 Nigel was at his Taunton home when he felt an intense pressure in his chest, along with a complete loss of energy – symptoms of a heart attack. He was brought into Musgrove Park’s cardiology department by ambulance and tests showed he had suffered a heart attack.

“As soon as I arrived by ambulance at the hospital I was quickly taken into an operating theatre,” said Nigel.

“I found all the staff very calm and well organised. Everything seemed to flow really well and I was put at ease in what was a really frightening situation.

“I didn’t feel any pain or sensations and within half an hour I was back on the coronary care unit to recover from the operation.

“Since returning home I have seen the hospital’s cardiac rehabilitation nurses, who have been helping me to get back to my normal self.”

Dr Mike Seddon, a consultant cardiologist at Musgrove Park Hospital, said:

“The rural geography of Somerset means it can be challenging to get people who have had a heart attack to the right place for life saving treatment so we are very pleased to be able to offer an emergency heart attack service at Musgrove Park.

“Being part of a cardiology team is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world as we see people come into the hospital so ill and yet the majority walk out of the door a few days later looking so well.

“Our team of cardiac specialist nurses will give our patients advice on controlling conditions related to the heart, including diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol, as well as help to stop smoking and other positive lifestyle changes.

“Over the last 10 years we have seen many developments to the service as technology advances, including additional imaging techniques in our labs, which has helped improve the accuracy of diagnoses. We look forward to continuing to care for patients across Somerset and beyond.”