We will always be grateful, says Ilkley family awaiting heart surgery verdict (From Wharfedale Observer)
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We will always be grateful, says Ilkley family awaiting heart surgery verdict
An Ilkley family is among those awaiting the verdict of the High Court review to determine the fate of the Children’s Heart Unit in Leeds.
The Murgatroyd family from Ilkley are among the many Yorkshire families who are grateful for the specialist services provided by the Leeds General Infirmary unit.
George Murgatroyd, eight, who is now fit and well, had major heart surgery last May following the diagnosis of a serious condition.
Thanks to his own determination and the quality of the care given, says his father, Ben Murgatroyd, George amazingly returned home just five days after open-heart surgery.
The family continues to do its own fundraising for the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund, which supports the legal challenge against last summer’s initial decision to close the Leeds unit.
“To say that the quality of service is not up to scratch is ridiculous. To take it away from the area has no thought for the families who will benefit,” said Mr Murgatroyd.
“The impact that surgery has on the families should not be under- estimated.
“Having a service as valuable as this in relative proximity eased the emotional strain on our family.
“Should it not be there we would had to have been apart as a family. For five days this may not have been such an issue but for those who may not be so fortunate it is. Those for whom recuperation is longer it would be a huge challenge, emotionally and financially.”
George was diagnosed with a suspected hole in his heart in August 2010 following a routine check-up with a health visitor following a grommet operation earlier in the year. A mild heart murmur was initially suspected.
But following an appointment with a consultant, it was established George had a hole between the two chambers of his heart, too large for keyhole surgery, which meant full open-heart surgery.
Mr Murgatroyd said: “It transpired during his eight hours of surgery in May of 2012 that it was in fact a lot more complicated and the pulmonary vein was also going into the wrong chamber, which meant one side of his heart was working on overload.”
The surgeons built a new back wall to the left chamber of his heart, redirected the pulmonary vein and patched the hole between the two chambers.
“We as a family have done various fundraising events and will continue to do so,” Mr Murgatroyd added.
“In the run-up to Christmas, George collected hundreds of CDs and DVDs, selling them to Music Magpie, raising £175 for the CHSF.”