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Monty Don health: Gardeners’ World host’s near-death experience after feeling ‘strange’

Monty Don says his wife 'doesn't enjoy' watching Succession

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Monty Don is a gardening legend, having presented his show for nearly two decades. However, the world nearly lost the star after he had a transient ischaemic attack– a mini-stroke. His seemingly near-death experience happened in February 2008 but was only officially recognised when he went to his GP the next month.

Although these mini-strokes typically do not result in death, people who have TIA are more likely to have a future stroke.

According to a study published in the American Heart Association, between five and eight percent of ITA patients die within six months.

On the day his attack happened, Don was hoping to start his busy working day at 3:45 am but stayed in bed for a couple of hours as he attempted to rid himself of the numbness in his arm, reported the Daily Mail.

He told the Guardian in 2009: “I was so exhausted I did not know whether I was coming or going. I remember waking up feeling strange and dizzy.”

The symptoms of TIA, according to Mayo Clinic are:

  • Weakness, numbness or paralysis in your face, arm or leg, typically on one side of your body
  • Slurred or garbled speech or difficulty understanding others
  • Blindness in one or both eyes or double vision
  • Vertigo or loss of balance or coordination

Don added: “I said to my wife Sarah, ‘God, something funny is happening; I may be having a stroke.’ We weren’t thinking: this is a disaster.

“I said, ‘Hang on, I can move my fingers.’ I remember thinking, ‘Oh, get a grip, you’re fine’.”

Despite the feeling, Don cracked on with his day–proceeding for a walk on the grounds of his Herefordshire home with his wife.

However, when the feeling persisted, he really started to panic.

“I turned to Sarah and said ‘Hold me because I think I’m dying and, if I am, I want to die in your arms’,” the presenter explained.

Despite the event, Don did not visit his GP until a month later.

An MRI scan showed an artery blockage in the star’s brain and the doctor confirmed he had suffered a mini-stroke, he told the Mail.

After his diagnosis, he was advised to take aspirin–a blood-thinning medication.

In response to a TIA, GPs will also recommend a series of lifestyle changes, which include quitting smoking, regular exercise, and improving your diet.

Don made a full recovery from his mini-stroke and is still the celebrated host of his show.

Unfortunately, this was not the only time Don had come close to dying.

He also contracted peritonitis whilst filming for Around the World in 80 Gardens.

This is a potentially fatal disease that is caused by an infection on the inner lining of your abdomen.

His wife also experienced this near-death experience.

Talking to Amateur Gardening Magazine about this ordeal, he said: “My wife found me collapsed. If she had not found me I would have died.”

If you believe you are having a stroke, you need to call 999 immediately.

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