I started losing consciousness four years ago. Then, I was treated by the Cardiology department at the Countess of Chester Hospital. It was made a little complicated by the fact I fell pregnant, so they couldn’t do a tilt test to confirm I had Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome.

As soon as I had my son they treated me with medication, which seemed to manage the condition well. During this period we relocated from Countess of Chester Hospital to Bedfordshire Hospital.

Then in August 2016, I started getting episodes of loss of consciousness every few weeks. I was referred to Cardiology at the Luton and Dunstable Hospital.

When I saw them, they referred me to Royal Brompton Hospital, as it was beyond their area of expertise. The cardiologist knew of Dr Saluke’s service, so referred me to that. I saw him in Jan 2017 initially. I had started to get a bit of respite for a couple of months, then from June 2017 the episodes started happening more and more frequently. Then by July, it was happening daily. 

During this period whilst I attended my local A&E for injuries sustained whilst unconscious, I remained under the Brompton, with Luton & Dunstable referring me back to them for advice. 

It was blogs and forums that helped me know that I wasn’t alone that got me through the sleepless nights. As well as the amazing Syncope service, especially the specialist nurses. At one stage we were pretty much in contact on a daily basis. 

My consultant Dr Saluke as well made it clear that whatever treatment worked or didn’t work, and that they wouldn’t give up on helping me.

So, I went from passing out daily to running first proper 10k race recently in training for the Royal Parks half marathon in October.

Not only have I got my life back, we got our family life back – which, with two young children, is the best thing anyone can give you.

- Sara Bentley

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