LIFE SAVER: Donald Errington and his daughter Kelli Dwyer are thankful for the treatment offered by the new St Vincent's Private Hospital stroke unit.
LIFE SAVER: Donald Errington and his daughter Kelli Dwyer are thankful for the treatment offered by the new St Vincent's Private Hospital stroke unit. Nev Madsen

Best Father's Day gift: New stroke ward comes to man's aid

A KINGAROY man has thanked the staff of a new stroke rehabilitation ward at St Vincent's Private Hospital, saying he thought "he was a goner" after suffering a stroke earlier this week.

Donald Errington was the first patient admitted to the "state-of-the-art" facility, the only of its kind outside of a metropolitan area in the state.

He said he had first realised something was wrong when he woke up at his property west of Toowoomba on Wednesday morning.

"I was feeling dizzy all over, the room was going round and round," Mr Errington said.

"I could hardly get out of bed. I sat on the side of it for a good half hour holding the wall."

Luckily for Mr Errington, his next-door neighbour phoned and realised he was slurring his words.

"He said 'you sound terrible'. He came straight up and said 'we better get you to the doctors'," Mr Errington said.

As soon as he arrived at the Kingaroy hospital, doctors realised the serious nature of his condition and they raced him to the Toowoomba Hospital in an ambulance.

After receiving immediate treatment, they then admitted Mr Errington to the stroke ward at St Vincent's Hospital.

The new ward provides both medical and holistic assistance and gives patients another option for stroke treatment in Toowoomba.

Donald Errington and his daughter Kelli Dwyer are thankful for the treatment offered by the new St Vincent's Private Hospital stroke unit.
Donald Errington and his daughter Kelli Dwyer are thankful for the treatment offered by the new St Vincent's Private Hospital stroke unit. Nev Madsen

"We were very happy for Don and luckily he came over on time," St Vincent's medical lead for stroke services Dr Nisal Gange said.

"We have done a round of investigations and have found that he had one of the common causes of a stroke, an irregular heart rhythm.

"Because of this unit, we could find this cause within 24 hours and treat him appropriately, helping to reduce his stroke chances by 80 per cent."

Dr Gange said although the new unit aided rehabilitation, it did not stock the medication required to provide the immediate treatment of acute strokes.

"Anyone who has acute stroke should call for an ambulance to get to the Toowoomba hospital," he said.

"We can provide the care after that treatment. We also provide care for mini-strokes and for patients who have had a stroke a few days ago and are ineligible for acute treatment."

Mr Errington's daughter Kelli Dwyer said the quick thinking actions of those around him had ensured a good outcome.

"This facility is amazing. It's a good Father's Day present for our family that's for sure," Ms Dwyer said.



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