Louis's Story

Louis Nicol, was just 16 years old at the time of his diagnosis.

He first became unwell with suspected tonsillitis whilst away from home on a school football tour. As he was away from his local GP, he waited to seek medical advice – upon returning home he took painkillers hoping they would help. That night, Louis woke up with a sharp and heavy pain across his chest as he lay in bed, an episode which lasted only for a few minutes.

Louis initially put this down to a reaction to the painkillers he had taken, however, the following night he experienced the same pains in his chest, this time more intense. His vision became blurry, he began shaking and was short of breath.

Louis’s brother drove him to hospital where he was diagnosed with myocarditis, which he caught from the infection in his tonsils. The infection had spread into the heart muscle causing it to become inflamed.

Prior to this episode, Louis had never suffered with heart problems. He was young, physically fit and healthy so his diagnosis was completely unexpected. He recalls his time in hospital where other heart patients on his ward were all much older and in keeping with what he imagined the ‘typical heart patient’ to look like.

Fortunately, it hasn’t affected Louis’s life long-term. Although he is vigilant over any change in the way he feels, he is back to full fitness and looking forward to the future and carrying on living life like any other healthy 22-year-old.