A heart patient has thanked his surgeons by donating £1,000 to the Lancashire Cardiac Centre every year since he received a life-saving operation.
David Slater was treated at the centre, based at Blackpool Victoria Hospital, six years ago when he was fitted with a replacement heart valve.
The procedure spelled the end of ongoing symptoms including a fast-beating heart and breathlessness caused by a bicuspid aortic valve, which around two per cent of people are born with.
Surgeons also discovered Mr Slater, from Freckleton, had an aneurysm which could have caused him further problems in the future.
Mr Slater said: “When I was 10, I was diagnosed with a heart murmur, but by 16 it had gone away.
“A couple of years before the procedure, I started to notice that I was having a fast beating heart for 30 seconds or so and it was slightly harder to breathe when this happened.
“This would happen four or five times a day and so I went to the GP to get it checked and was sent for an ECG.
“I’ve felt fine since having the operation, but I wanted to donate a thousand pounds each year as a thank you for my treatment.
“I’ll continue to for as long as I can.”
So far, Mr Slater, 56, has donated £6,000 to the centre’s Heart of Gold Charitable Fund, which is run by the hospital’s charity Blue Skies Hospitals Fund.
The money has been used to buy new technology to help in heart valve repairs.
Consultant cardiothoracic surgeon Andrew Duncan, who operated on David at the Lancashire Cardiac Centre, said: “It’s donations like this that mean we can buy novel equipment which helps us be one of the leading cardiac centres in the UK.
“We have used the money to help buy suture-less aortic valves, which are a new technology.
“The equipment which we use can be incredibly expensive, so we need all the donations we can get to help support the work we do.
“This money really has made a difference.
“We’re incredibly grateful to Mr Slater and, behalf of me and my team, I’d like to say a huge thank you to him for this ongoing support.”