An Edinburgh GP has told how a heart monitor attached to his bike saved his life when it picked up an issue he was not aware of. Tommy Hepburn, 61, had retired from working as a GP in Edinburgh and was looking forward to making the most of his free time with hiking, skiing and cycling.
The keen cyclist was training for a series of bike rides when a heart rate monitor attached to his bike picked up something that wasn’t right.
Dr Hepburn went to see his own GP, followed by a referral to cardiologist Dave Newby at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, and was diagnosed with heart valve disease.
He had an aneurysm in the aortic root which needed to be treated as soon as possible.
But like many patients with heart valve disease Dr Hepburn had not had any obvious symptoms and had no idea of his condition.
Professor Newby also spotted a bicuspid aortic valve which was slightly calcified, so this was also replaced when treating the aneurysm.
Dr Hepburn said he feels very lucky that the bike heart monitor flagged up the problem, potentially saving his life.“As a GP I was aware of heart valve disease but had not suspected the disease was going to threaten my life until a bike heart monitor recognised a potential problem,” he said."As someone who has experienced heart valve disease, I feel very lucky that I found out in time to have the brilliant treatment that has allowed me to continue with my active […]