A PERSONAL trainer who has undergone two open-heart surgeries has raised £400 towards the British Heart Foundation’s (BHF) life saving research.
Scott Francis, who prides himself on eating healthy and staying fit, was shocked to discover he had heart valve disease at just 22-years-old.
But a determined Scott, now 30, has not let his adversity stop him from running.
His most recent achievement was completing the Handsworth Park 10k Fun Run on September 16.
“Taking Part in this event, along with so many other people affected by heart and circulatory disease was a very emotional experience for me.
“It was my first 10k run and I had trained pretty hard for it, so I was really pleased that I managed to complete it in just under one hour.”
Before the surgeries Scott’s heart was unable to pump blood effectively which resulted in blood leaking back into it.
This meant that Scott became short of breath quicker than normal as his heart had to work even harder.
“My initial diagnosis came as a shock because I was physically fit, rarely drank and never smoked.”
He underwent his first operation in December 2011 and had the leaky valve replaced with a mechanical one.
Following the procedure things were looking good for Scott who appeared to be on the road to recovery after getting back into playing football.
But in August 2013 he noticed a change in his fitness levels and after undergoing various tests it was confirmed that scar tissue was blocking the new mechanical valve.
He once again had to undergo heart surgery in 2014 but has since recovered.
Donna Stokes, BHF’s Fundraising Manager for Birmingham and Solihull, said: “Heart and circulatory conditions affect over 7 million people in the UK, and Scott’s story shows that they can affect anyone – young, old, male or female and the physically fit.
“We rely on the generosity of the public to ensure that the BHF can continue to fund research into these conditions and beat heartbreak forever.”
Visit www.bhf.org.uk/localfundraising to find out more about fundraising with the BHF.