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Russell

Russell

Name: Russell Baker
Age: 24
Year of the Fix: 2012
Location: Chatham, Kent
Campaign: Encouraging others to have heart screenings

While walking to work in February 2012, I fell to the pavement, breaking my jaw, and stopped breathing. My heart failed. I was just 23-years-old.

 

Luckily I was resuscitated at the scene by two men, Harry and Peter, who owned a nearby café and just so happened to be ex-healthcare staff.

 

After seven-weeks treatment in hospital, I was diagnosed with a rare heart defect called dilated cardiomyopathy, or DCM, which causes weakened heart muscles to insufficiently pump blood around the body.

 

Now to live, I have to use a defibrillator and a pacemaker to ensure my heart keeps pumping blood. But while it has meant a change of life for me, I am very thankful to the guys who saved my life.

 

Now I want to tell other young people to get their hearts scanned. I was a lifeguard and was relatively fit, and there were no signs of any form of heart defect.

 

Around 80% of heart conditions show no symptoms, and that is why I am trying to encourage everyone to screen their heart and to look out for their cardiac health.

C-R-Y: Cardiac Risk in the Young

A group formed in 1995 which is still campaigning to raise awareness of sudden death conditions.

 

Medway Community Healthcare (NHS)

Part of the NHS who helped with my diagnosis and treatment.

 

Peter Moorcroft and Harry Smith from ​Cafe Moroc ​who helped save my life and agreed to feature in my film.

10th January 2013:

My story was featured on BBC Radio Kent. Listen to the interview by clicking the media below

 


January 2013:
My story was featured in the Medway Times. You can read the story here.

 

My story was also featured in the Medway Messenger. Click here to the read the full story.

 

December 2012:

Filming for my project took place in Chatham.

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