Heart surgery

Christopher Biggins: Star doesn’t know “how many years has left” – heart surgery


The actor and comedian who regularly stars in pantomime this time of year is a big fan favorite, but at 73 the star’s fast-paced lifestyle is starting to catch up with him. In 2010, after playing at the Edinburgh Festival, Biggins started feeling too tired and struggled to learn lines. Out of curiosity, he went to the medics who performed tests and gave Biggins a shocking diagnosis. “When I came back for the results, I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, which was a shock,” Biggins commented at the time. Unfortunately for the star, dealing with a chronic illness was only one of the health issues he would encounter, this year the star revealed he had undergone emergency open heart surgery after an alert. health.

At the time of his diagnosis of diabetes, Biggins said he didn’t think there was anything really wrong with his health, only that he was tired – which made his diagnosis all the more shocking.

He added, “My diagnosis might be different from others. There are other symptoms that could be a sign of type 2 diabetes; including needing to go to the bathroom, getting really thirsty, losing weight without trying or blurry vision to name a few.

As Biggins so aptly put it, type 2 diabetes often occurs without any warning signs or symptoms, or without general symptoms that make you feel bad.

The NHS explains that although it is a common condition, type 2 diabetes causes blood sugar levels to be too high.

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Symptoms to watch out for are:

  • Pee more than usual, especially at night
  • Be thirsty all the time
  • Feeling very tired
  • Lose weight without trying to
  • Itching around the penis or vagina, or repeated yeast infection
  • Cuts or wounds that take longer to heal
  • Blurred vision.

While the disease can never be cured, making major lifestyle changes may be enough to bring the disease under control – something Biggins admitted he never did.

“I feel very healthy but I know I need to improve things,” he said.

“So I want to do something about it. I’ve started eating a lot less recently and don’t drink as much as I did when I was younger. But I know I could do more.

The star has vowed to “pull herself together” in an effort to stay as healthy as possible for “as many years as she has left.”

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Yet this year, that claim couldn’t have ringed more true, as Biggins suffered another health crisis, one that resulted in him needing open heart surgery to install a new valve.

Speaking to The Sun, the star said, “I’m like the bionic man. I had a new knee and had a new valve in my heart. It’s not easy to grow old.

“As you get older, the things you go to – other than restaurants and theaters – are funerals and memorial services.

“It makes you realize that life is very superficial.

“It’s not easy. You never know when you’re going to go.

“I’ve always been aware of being a big boy – weight conscious and dieting.”

The British Heart Foundation explains that heart valve surgery is performed when individuals suffer from heart valve disease. As the heart has four valves, each of which has the task of making sure that blood flows through the heart in the right direction, if any of them are damaged or diseased, it can affect the way the blood circulates in the heart. the heart.

Valves that do not open fully obstruct blood flow, known as valve stenosis or narrowing. And a valve that doesn’t close properly will allow blood to flow backward, which is known as valve incompetence or regurgitation.

Some people need little or no treatment, but doctors will need to examine you to determine the extent of the damage. The two main treatment options include repair or replacement of the valve.

Biggins had an entire valve replaced by surgery, which replaced the damaged valve with a new one, usually made artificially or from animal tissue.

Heart valve replacement surgery is usually successful, but any operation comes with certain risks. The Mayo Clinic explains that the possible risks include:

  • Bleeding
  • Heart attack
  • Infection
  • Valve dysfunction affecting replaced valves
  • Irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia)
  • Stroke
  • Death.

However, after surgery, individuals will have a better quality of life, with improved symptoms.