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Phil Smith's Story


Hi there,

Been trying to do this for days ... it all began whilst I was taking a shower, I'm one of those people that like to lay under the shower on warm days. Just as my head touched the bath pillow, I got this terrible pain! When it hadn't gone after a few seconds, I knew something was wrong.

Now, I live alone, so had locked the door and left my phone downstairs. Getting out of the bath/shower was quite a struggle. I couldn't get my head above my shoulders without the pain getting worse. Managed somehow to get my leg over the side of the bath and fell head first into the wash basket!

I was there for a while and eventually got on all fours. I got my shorts on and deciced to tackle the stairs leaning on my right side. I got down and went into the living room, found my phone and called my sister when my brother in law answered. I tried to speak but it wasn't me ... this slurred voice was talking to him but he didn't know who it was. Managed to get my name out and they came ... soon as they saw me dialled 999, paramedic was there in minutes. I started being sick and heard him say "I think he's had a SAH"

I hadn't a clue what this was and he said I should get checked at Peterborough Hospital. By this time my daughters had arrived and somehow I walked to the ambulance, got on the gurney. My eldest daughter got in with me, until I started being sick again and she was almost sick as well! (takes after her dad)... so decided to follow in the car..."don't worry I'm okay" I slurred. Arrived at the hospital after lots more sick ... taken to admissions room "who was I, where was I, who was the Prime Minister" ...how bad's the pain on a scale of 1 to 10?" ... 10 and the lights are hurting my eyes"

After two shots of morphine, I promptly had a seizure and woke in Addenbrokes, Cambridge to be told that I had indeed had a SAH and would need coiling. I've never been in hospital before...I was even born at home, so this was a rude awakening for me... prodded and poked every hour the same questions over and over.... strange could answer sometimes and not others.

The surgeon came explained everything to me, although for the life of me, can only remember bits of it, this was Sunday, the day after I'd had a scan at Peterborough ... went again for another before the operation.

After no sleep, no food and no drink for almost 4 days, they took me down ... it was Tuesday 3.40 pm. I woke at just after midnight in the HDU... there I lay for 15 hours, in and out of consciousness. Taken back to the ward and told that everything had gone fine.

After 6 more nights of sweats and prodding, I was discharged and allowed to stay with my sister until the course of tablets was finished.

I consider myself to have had an easy time of it compared to some of the people I met in hospital and some of the stories I've read on BTG ... I know in my own mind, how painful it was and can't thank the staff at Peterborough and Addenbrookes enough, for what they did for me.

I didn't know that I could have died and cried when they told me how lucky I was. Thanks to the skill and dedication of everyone at both hospitals and the love with which my family and friends showed me, I'm still here and on the mend... not what I was before ... that's to be expected.. slight headaches, forgetfulness, tiredness and eyes a bit iffy ... aside from that, I'm doing fine. Thanks for listening.

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