Kenton Grandmother thanks Northwick Park Hospital for saving her life

Alan and Sheila Shaw

Alan and Sheila Shaw - Credit: Archant

A grandmother from Kenton has praised staff at Northwick Park Hospital who she credits for saving her life with innovative procedures.

Sheila Shaw following a pioneering heart operation with Professor Martin Malina

Sheila Shaw following a pioneering heart operation with Professor Martin Malina - Credit: Archant

Sheila Shaw, 76. was rushed to the Emergency Department at the hospital in Watford Road last September with severe pain all over her body, leaving her unable to walk.

After investigation it was found her aorta, the main artery of the body supplying oxygenated blood to the body, had burst with two litres of blood collected in her chest.

Mrs Shaw, who has three grandchildren, was given endovascular surgery to repair a burst aorta which has never been used at the hospital but known to improved survival rates and faster recovery times for patients.

Her husband Alan, 78, said the family were terrified she would not survive but she has made a good recovery.

She said: “I feel good now. I get tired now and again, but I pace myself and try to get on with it. I am very grateful to Professor Malina and all the staff at Northwick Park Hospital who looked after me – they saved my life. It is an excellent place to come and I wouldn’t think about going anywhere else – the treatment I received was excellent.”

Professor Martin Malina, consultant vascular and endovascular surgeon, said: “Sheila was very poorly and it is fair to say that most patients in her condition would not have survived. We had to act quickly and we used a type of keyhole surgery, known as endovascular surgery to repair the aorta without the need to open the chest.

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“This type of surgery is less invasive than open surgery. We make small cuts in the patient’s groin and a graft, made of metal mesh lined with fabric, is guided up through the leg artery, into the damaged aorta. This graft replaces the burst aorta and stops the bleeding.”

He added: “Endovascular surgery brings many benefits over open surgery traditionally used in these types of cases. It is less traumatic and recovery time is less. Many patients can also undergo treatment under local anaesthetic.”

Northwick Park Hospital, part of the London North West Healthcare NHS Trust, is now creating an integrated centre of excellence for vascular surgery and interventional radiology.

The West London Vascular and Interventional Centre brings together different healthcare professionals ‘under one roof’ in order to treat vascular disease in new and pioneering ways.