My Life

About Me

Without any warning in August 2007, I collapsed at work, the next thing I knew it was 5 weeks later and I was laying in Tunbridge Wells’ hospital recovering from a near fatal heart attack. Alan recalls: “I went to work feeling fine that day, nothing out of the ordinary and it wasn’t until I woke up in hospital that I realised the severity of what had happened to me. I was in there for another 3 weeks before being transferred up to St Thomas’ for a triple heart bypass. Although I didn’t feel any symptoms before my heart attack I have been lucky not to have any after affects either. I feel healthy, revitalised and alert.”

The paramedic that was trying to resuscitate me was so shocked to learn I was still alive he went to visit me in Tunbridge Wells.

“It was a shock for me to learn from the paramedic that I had practically flat lined whilst he was resuscitating me, he said my heart was beating but I wasn’t breathing, and it is a miracle I am alive and well today.

“Despite my near death experience, I am back to being on the go. I did put on about 2 stone after my heart attack where exercising wasn’t very easy. With the help of the cardiac phase IV classes at a Gym, and with the support of the class instructor, my mentor Naomi, I have really concentrated on the weight loss and am now at a healthy and manageable 12 stone, sadly this gym has now been closed by the council, and we have moved to a new gym but Naomi’s classes are fantastic and the Cardiac Rehab exercise has made such a difference to my life, so I am grateful for this service.”

I has also had a pacemaker fitted as well. The pacemaker’s job is to take over from the heart’s natural pacemaker – the sinus node. Modern pacemakers are comfortable and efficient, “I don’t even notice it, but I know it’s helping to save my life and give me my quality of life back.”

Over the past few weeks, I have been getting out of breath, more and more, eventually the local hospital contacted me and after some more tests they have told me that I have COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) I am only using 50% of my lungs, this problem has now been diagnosed as Pulmonary Fibrosis, which is Interstitial Lung Disease, I might be lucky enough one day to catch something that the doctors can cure. This has now been diagnosed at Guys Hospital as NSIP( Non Specific Interstitial Pneumonia) which apparently is a rare form that destroys the parts of my lungs that get inflamed.

Another test showed that I also have ITP (Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura), this is where my immune system is seeing the platelets in my blood as alien, and is destroying them, so to counteract this I have been on a course of Steroids, they suppress my immune system and allow my platelets to build up again, but this in turn makes me more liable to catching colds and flu, and also makes me put weight on.

No matter what though, I will BEAT all of it and live for as long as I possibly can.

I can only hope that anyone reading my story, gets inspiration from it and FIGHTS whatever they have to live as full a life as they can, remember, there is always HOPE.

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11 Replies

  • Your story and positive attitude have certainly impressed me Vyner. Welcome to the site xx

  • Hi Vyner, you have had a lot of challenges to cope with, I too have been recently diagnosed with nsip and also have 50% lung function, this coming Monday through to Wednesday I am to be put on a drip of steroids, and to be given steroids and a drug called methotrexate not sure of the spelling, I was originally diagnosed seven years ago with Alveolitis after contracting swine flu, I had never heard of the condition nsip until I was diagnosed, although I have only posted on here a few times, this is a great forum and I have learnt so much from others.

    Kind regards


  • Goodness,you have a great fighting spirit,which no doubt will help you through in the future😊

    Great post,welcome to the family💐xxx

  • Very inspirational post Vyner and l wish you the very best. My husband Pete intends to be around for as long as possible too. He has sarcoidosis and COPD.

    You take care xxxxx

  • Hello Vyner, your story is amazing and I hope it helps others. I noticed the word FIGHTS at the end and recall a doctor at my surgery saying " If you keep fighting us we won't be able to help you " But you and I know different sometimes fight is where we get our strength from. Steroids are a marvellous drug but as you say they have unwanted side effects. Live for today as no one knows what tommorrow will bring. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday your words are inspirational.

  • you are a very brave person. I too have lots of health problems ,but just like you I will 😊 keep fighting. You take care and please keep in touch, I would love to know how you are getting on,😊 xxx

  • Hi Vyner. Very lucky person. Sounds like you could also have emphasima with your breathing. I had a triple 27 yrs ago. Made me feel like a new man. From that day I have taken aspirin, Vit E & C every day. Never had any angina but still smoke. I am 75. MOver the last few yrs been getting bronchitis and Pheumonia very often around 3-4 time a yr. the Prendisone steroids have knocked shit out of me, so many side affects. I have just now finished my reduction program and will never take these killers again. They gave me diabetes (never had it before) swollen. Legs/feet, very tired legs, muscle loss, shortage breath, hard to sleep. Blared eyesight.

    Do not know if it is my imagination but I starting to feel better In general after coming to the end of the steroid use.

    Best of luck yust get on with it try not to worry over to much.


  • I like prednisolone! Lots of people have to take it for their condition. I have been taking it for a long time, and am on maintenance dose of 5mg now. The only side effects I have had are osteoporosis (you need to ask your doctor to give you some regular medication to counteract that) and difficulty in sleeping but if I take my prednisolone at bedtime instead of in the morning I get to sleep quite easily.

  • Vyner, you are so courageous and inspiring! Loved hearing your story and think you are amazing!😀 huff xxx

  • My goodness what a catalogue of health issues you have. Made me feel tired just reading about them.

    I truly hope you will be able to keep going and maintain a reasonable quality of life. I believe the mind is a powerful tool. Being positive and determined works.

  • Wow, you've been through the ringer. However you have what it takes to move on. Very inspirational! Thanks for that, good luck and have a long and happy life.


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