Dr Dunn is here to answer your queries

FRANK DUNN
FRANK DUNN

A LOCAL legend – well-known to many Herald readers and patients of Stobhill General Hospital and Glasgow Royal Infirmary – has joined the Herald team.

Dr Frank Dunn will be writing a regular health-related column for the paper.

As well as his fortnightly article Dr Dunn is happy to answer any medical questions readers may have.

Here is the first article in Dr Dunn’s ‘Heart of the Matter’ series:

I AM delighted to be writing this column for the Herald in relation to my experiences in medicine over the past 41 years.

It seems no time since I walked through the cloisters of the University of Glasgow following my graduation in 1970.

The changes that have occurred in health care since then have been immense and have developed more in those 41 years than all previous time.

It is therefore just as well that doctors continue to study and to develop throughout their career.

My own career took me to the area of the heart and blood vessels - and I could not have asked for a more stimulating or fulfilling specialty.

Great progress has been made in both the treatment and prevention of heart disease and it has been exciting to be in the midst of this as a cardiologist.

I have several generations of families that I have looked after during my 28 years as a Consultant at Stobhill.

What a great hospital it was to have been a part of, and what support we obtained from staff and, yes, management as well in maintaining the hospital at the cutting edge for so many years.

I make no bones about the fact that it has been a great sadness to see the inpatient facilities of Stobhill closing.

It is of some comfort, however, during my visits to the Royal Infirmary to see so many Stobhill faces bringing the Stobhill family atmosphere to the Royal.

The sadness of losing Stobhill in the past year has been overshadowed by the death of my consultant colleague, Dr Kerry-Jane Hogg, at the early age of 51 years.

In all my years in medicine I have never seen such an outpouring of grief from staff and patients alike and not a day goes by without her name coming up in conversation.

We worked closely together since her time as a junior doctor at Stobhill and it was a source of great happiness for me to see Kerry moving up through the training grades and to distinguish herself so well as a consultant from 1991 onwards.

When Kerry died she was at the height of her career. She was an outstanding caring cardiologist. She was a leading expert in pacemakers and in coronary angioplasty.

She was so respected that in the year before her death she was appointed to the prestigious role of Programme Director for cardiology trainees in the West of Scotland.

She embraced this additional commitment with the same dedication as all other aspects of her life and work.

I have no doubt her name will come up in my future columns and we are currently working on ways to permanently remember her.

My columns will feature areas in heart disease that I hope will be both interesting and informative to the readers.

I hope they will also entertain, since humour abounds within hospitals.

There is no greater medication than laughter. I may have been heard in the corridors of Stobhill humming the tune “Smile though your heart is aching, smile even though it’s breaking, you’ll find that life is worthwhile if you just smile”.

I spared the staff and patients any attempts at actually singing it!

I will be more than happy to answer readers queries personally or if the editor feels appropriate in print.

I look forward to ongoing communication with you all through the columns of this newspaper.

Dr Frank Dunn

* If you have a medical query you would like to put to Dr Dunn, write to:

Heart of the Matter, Herald Offices, 11 Dalrymple Court , Kirkintilloch G66 3AA.

Alternatively e-mail kirkyherald@jnscotland.co.uk