Dancing grandma thanks hospital staff after Christmas Day heart attack

By Nick Humphreys | Bridgnorth | Health | Published:

A dancing grandma from Bridgnorth who was rushed to hospital after a heart attack on Christmas Day has thanked doctors for "saving my life".

Joan Fulwell is recovering after two heart attacks

Joan Fulwell, 79, took ill after attending Midnight Mass at St Mary Magdalene Church, and was taken to Princess Royal Hospital in Telford.

She was told she'd had a minor heart attack but, just a few days later, she suffered another massive heart attack. She was taken to Royal Stoke University Hospital's for emergency surgery to have three stents fitted into her arteries.

It came as a shock to active Joan, who teaches dance classes, does yoga and is involved in Bridgnorth Horticultural Society. But thankfully she is on the mend, and she heaped praise on the medical staff who took care of her.

"I had a heart attack and they saved my life. I couldn't have had better treatment," she said.

"People are always running down Princess Royal Hospital but when I was there over Christmas I received wonderful care."

She added: "I hadn't felt well for quite some time. I went to Christmas Mass and afterwards I could hardly even walk to the car. I should have got an ambulance then. I went home and couldn't lie down so my friend and sons took me to hospital. I went to A&E and they were wonderful there."


Joan's Christmas Day was a far cry from her original plans, to have a slap-up festive feast at Ramada Hotel. But worse was to come on the December 28, when she suffered a huge second heart attack.


"It was so serious that they sent for my sons because they didn't think I was going to make it," she said.

Joan was conveyed to hospital in Stoke, where she had three hours of surgery on her arm while she remained awake.

"They do it through the veins in your hands," she said. "It's like a burning sensation. It's marvellous what they can do."

Grandmother-of-one Joan, who teaches Latin and Ballroom in Wombourne and Kidderminster, is now resting up and recovering, but hopes it won't be too long until she can get her dancing shoes back on again.

She said: "I can't do anything for two weeks. I'm just going to be taking it slow. The doctors said I should be back to how I was in about six weeks."

Nick Humphreys

By Nick Humphreys
Senior Reporter

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star focusing on Shrewsbury.


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