North East UK news Man who caught Covid celebrating anniversary in Santorini had stroke in hospital MetiNews.Com
MetiNews.Com - South Shields couple David and Catherine Kirton’s dream holiday turned into a nightmare when David developed coronavirus symptoms after 10 days on the Greek island in March
Breaking News ! A man who caught Covid-19 while celebrating his ruby wedding anniversary in Santorini woke up in a Belgian hospital two weeks later to be told he had suffered a stroke. David and Catherine Kirton’s dream holiday turned into a nightmare when David developed coronavirus symptoms after 10 days on the Greek island in March. The 64-year-old did not return to his home in South Shields until the end of May - a traumatic two months that saw him spend two weeks on a ventilator in Belgium before contracting pneumonia and having a stroke. As David fought for his life, his distraught wife Catherine stayed by herself in a hotel that had closed during lockdown. After going away to celebrate 40 years of marriage, the only time the pair saw each other for weeks was a brief glimpse through a window as he was being transferred. David was eventually repatriated and spent six weeks at Sunderland Royal Hospital learning to walk and talk again following the stroke. Read More Related Articles Newcastle hospital boss claims 'nanny state' local lockdown will “prolong the pain” of Covid-19 Read More Related Articles 11 staff and pupils self-isolating after Scotswood school pupil catches coronavirus David had been in Santorini for just over a week when he started feeling unwell. “I just felt listless and had no energy, my brain wasn’t working properly,” he said. “I just knew I wasn’t well, I didn’t think it might be Covid-19. I just thought I was running out of steam.” As the virus spread across Europe, the hotels and restaurants on the island closed and the couple had to cut their holiday short after 12 days. In order to try and get back home, David and Catherine first flew to Belgium via Athens, and were intending to drive to Holland where David worked for 10 days a week as a piping engineer. But as they got off the plane, David started to stagger and they had to book into a hotel because he was feeling so unwell. He said: “I can remember being in the hotel and the medic coming in with gloves taped to his arms and running outside to get a doctor. He said ‘hospital, now’. David Kirton in Santorini “As the ambulance drove away the hotel staff were shutting the hotel - they gave my wife a key and she stayed there by herself. David was rushed into intensive care and placed on a ventilator for over two weeks. After coming out of intensive care and being placed on a ward, he had a stroke and spent a further five days in intensive care. He said: “I was in a coma and when I woke up I was in Belgium where they spoke French, and my whole left side didn’t work. “Luckily for me the doctors in Belgium kept me alive - they did a great job. They told me I had had Covid-19 which brought on pneumonia.
. David said: “I was lucky to be alive. I remember being in the ambulance on the way home and getting to hospital but everything was a blur. I was awake but not aware, and I couldn’t move voluntarily at all.”
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Once back in the North East, Dave was admitted to Sunderland Royal Hospital and placed on a temporary ward as the stroke ward was being used for Covid-19 patients. Catherine said: “There were less stroke specialists on the ward so we don’t feel David received the level of care he should have. “He should have had tests done on his eyes as his vision was affected, but none of it was done. “However the physiotherapists at Sunderland were outstanding and couldn’t have done more. “The hospital wanted to discharge David on May 7 but he couldn’t even lift his head at this point. “After discussions and seeing the benefits of his physiotherapy, he stayed in hospital until 30 May. He underwent another couple of weeks of intense physiotherapy, every day.”
By the time he left hospital on May 30, David was able to stand, and had walked two or three steps. David’s stroke has caused vision problems with the top half of his vision distorted. He also has left sided weakness and reduced mobility, using a wheelchair when he goes out. David’s stroke has also resulted in issues with his memory, thinking and understanding. David has shared his story as The Stroke Association has released a report claiming stroke care “is on the precipice of a national crisis”. The charity estimates that there are over 35,000 stroke survivors who had a stroke during the pandemic and who require more support. Juliet Bouverie, Chief Executive of the Stroke Association says: “Strokes didn’t stop happening because of the pandemic, but some treatments became unavailable and most stroke aftercare ground to a halt. This means more stroke survivors are living with avoidable, unnecessary disability. “This generation of stroke survivors can rebuild their lives, but only if governments and health services act quickly and with genuine commitment.”
Source = MetiNews.Com