Northampton woman to complete skydive to mark one-year anniversary of her life-saving heart transplant
The 22-year-old has suffered with heart conditions since she was four
A young woman from Northampton is taking on an adrenaline-pumping fundraising challenge in a bid to raise money for a hospital which gave her life-saving surgery.
Hayley Pagano, from Westone, was diagnosed with long QT syndrome - a heart condition which results in an increased risk of an irregular heartbeat - when she was four years old.
At the age of 19, Hayley was also diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy, a heart defect, which means sometimes not enough blood is pumped around the body.
After the diagnosis in 2018, the financial accounts assistant had a life-saving heart transplant at Royal Papworth Hospital last year.
To give back, the now 22-year-old is taking on a skydive to raise money for the Cambridgeshire hospital.
Hayley said: “In May 2018 I started to notice swelling on my ankles so I mentioned it at my next cardiology appointment and I was sent for more appointments where they noticed the dilated cardiomyopathy.
“Both the conditions I have are hereditary and my dad also has both of them.
“I’ve known from day one that I would need a transplant.
“It was needed after I was diagnosed with my second condition, but I had to lose three stone before I would even be considered for the operation.”
Hayley managed to lose the weight required within two years and had a successful heart transplant on July 19, 2020, despite very few similar operations going ahead during the pandemic.
Since then, Hayley has undergone recovery and is now back at work and able to take her dogs for walks.
She added: “I’m up and about as much as I can be and I feel very lucky to have had the operation, especially during Covid.
“It has taken away the issues, although it is a treatment and not a solution and it won’t last forever.
“My dad had his transplant in 1999 and he’s still going, so that gives me hope.
“I now want to raise money for Papworth as they gave me this, so I want to give something back to them.”
On July 21 this year - the one year anniversary of Hayley’s transplant - she will complete a sponsored skydive.
A number of years ago she intended to do a skydive with a friend, however she was not able to due to her heart conditions, so now she is excited to take on the challenge.
To support Hayley and make a donation, visit her GoFundMe page.
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