New Heart Attack Centre for Ashford

Hundreds of lives are going to be saved thanks to new Ashford treatment centre that's using pioneering surgery techniques.

Heart's been along to a brand new centre in at the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford that is using new techniques to save patients' lives.

People who'd suffered a heart attack used to be given drugs, but new evidence has shown the procedure 'Angioplasty' can save more lives and has a better long term prognosis.

It's a procedure to unblock the artery carry blood to the heart.  Under local anaesthetic, a small balloon is inserted via an artery in the groin or arm and guided to the blockage.

Once in place, the balloon is inflated and removed, leaving behind a rigid 'stent' allowing blood to flow through.

Information from an ECG given to the patient in the ambulance can be sent straight to the team at Ashford who can confirm the type of heart attack before the patient even arrives.

Bryan Sutton from Deal was the first patient to be treated, click to listen to his story

Specialist Dr Kamilvand has told Heart the centre is going to save lives

David Davis is a paramedic who will be taking patients from across Kent to the new centre

Here are the symptoms of a heart attack: (From NHS Eastern and Coastal Kent)

  • crushing central chest pain or mild chest discomfort
  • shortness of breath
  • clammy, sweaty, grey complexion
  • dizziness
  • nausea and vomiting
  • restlessness
  • coughing
  • feeling of being unwell and frightening sense that one is about to die

The pain often starts in the chest and then travels to the neck, jaw, ears, arms and wrists.  Sometimes it travels between the shoulder blades, back or abdomen.  It can last from five minutes to several hours.

If you suspect that you, or someone you know is having a heart attack, dial 999 immediately. Do not wait.