22 Feb Be smart and love your heart ❤️ | TDHS | Red Feb
Princetown farmer Neil Boxshall often lays down on the loungeroom carpet and has a short rest. His wife Lynne has seen him do it many times, but on the 10th of January 2020 her husband’s nap took a turn for the worse.
“I remember Lynne waking me… she was saying ‘sit up, sit up, sit up’. It was all a bit confusing, but she later told me I was making strange noises and had moved around on the floor quite a bit and worked my way under a chair,” Mr Boxshall said.
“It was clear to her something had happened to me. I felt really unwell, I was giddy and just out of whack. I was vomiting and I’d lost control of my bladder.”
Mrs Boxshall, a former nurse, knew it was heart related. She called triple Zero and ambulances from Lavers Hill and Timboon attended.
“I was taken to Timboon and District Healthcare Service (TDHS) and I remember that trip being very unpleasant. I wasn’t well and I couldn’t wait for it to be over,” he said.
“They got me on a trolley at Timboon and I remember getting wheeled to a room and saying to them ‘everything is getting wonky again’.
“That was the last thing I remember. When I woke up I didn’t have a shirt on, I had a catheter in one arm and they were putting one in my other arm.”
It was then the Mr Boxshall was told he had gone into cardiac arrest, his heart had stopped beating for about a minute and Dr Diana PenevaArabadjiyska and the nursing team had performed CPR.
“They put AED pads on me but didn’t need to use them – I came back and then regained consciousness and a nurse said ‘you gave us a fright’,” he said.
“Lynne was still at home and the nurses were calling her with updates, which was wonderful. My daughter Kylie (Treble) was calling as well and was able to get some information.
“We are so lucky it (TDHS) is here… we don’t know what might have happened if I had to be taken further in the ambulance.
“After I was stabilised, they flew me to Geelong in a helicopter. I remember feeling better by then and I was able to sit up, look out the window and recognise landmarks.”
Mr Boxshall had two stents put in the following day and returned home for a six-month cardiac rehabilitation program which required regular trips to Warrnambool.
“I count myself very lucky. I’m not a sick person and haven’t needed the hospital too often – although I did shoot my finger off with a rifle one day and got that fixed up here as well.
“We have a B&B and I’ve also taken guests to Timboon hospital if they’ve been unwell and also Lynne one night when she became crook.”
Heart Research Australia RedFeb
Heart Research Australia is encouraging Australians to wear red and donate during February, to raise awareness for heart disease and funds for life-saving research, to help keep families together for longer.
Princetown farmer Neil Boxshall shared his story in our Quality of Care calendar showing the importance of knowing the symptoms of a heart attack and acting quickly could be the difference between life and death.