In 2015, Jess’s heart starting racing at speeds up to 232 beats per minute.

Tests found she had a hole in her heart and on 16 August 2016, Jess had open heart surgery. 

She said:

“It’s a date we will never forget! The operation took almost six hours and it took a couple of attempts to start my heart again but it went very well. Five hours after they brought me to the High Dependency Unit I was awake and saying hello to my family.

“Five days later I had an Echocardiogram that showed my heart was already shrinking and I was in a stable sinus rhythm for the first time.

“After six days they let me go home to recover.”

Last year Jess completed a skydive to raise money for Above & Beyond and now she is lending her support to the BHI Appeal.

“All the staff were fantastic in aiding my recovery! Everybody was incredible and I wouldn't be where I am without them.

“Since the open heart surgery, my life has greatly improved. I finally started to feel more myself almost straight away.

“Soon enough I was able to eat properly, I had more energy, I could walk up and down the stairs without becoming breathless and light headed, I was sleeping properly and no longer constantly exhausted. After five months I finally started working again.

 “A year after my surgery I took part in a skydive to raise money for Above & Beyond, all the money went to the ward that took such excellent care of me.

“Now I am working and travelling in Australia having the time of my life. The whole time I was broken I had been planning this and it amazes me that I am finally here and able to do it.”

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