Noisy Heart Valve, by Alistair Baldwin

Alistair Baldwin

Alistair wrote this poem after having heart valve replacement surgery last year. He wants to thank those who looked after him, including Dr Vincent Kielty and the cardiology departments at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and Papworth Hospital.

I went to see the doctor just last year, at 45 my HGV medical is here.

He placed a stethoscope on my chest to hear: 'A noise from your heart, I hear it clear.

This noise on your heart is so severe, to DVLA we have to declare.'

Well this is where the investigation did start, wires on my chest and images of my heart.

A pipe in my groin poked up to my heart, we are now able to see the noisy part.

The nurses came and put needles in my arm, they were really nice and meant me no harm.

The consultants they now have a noise diagnosis, bicuspid valve and aortic stenosis.

With surgery offering the best prognosis, going under the knife meant bye bye stenosis.

Well they monitor the valve for nearly a year, then my consultation “Critical” I hear.

So being an HGV engineer, the choice of valve? Mechanical it’s clear.

And now that my big day is here, it’s time for my surgeon to do my repair.

I wake to find some pipes in my chest, it’s a good job that I can lay here and rest.

The nurses cared for me on my poorest days, a very BIG “THANK YOU” I’d just like to say

Then before you know it the nurses request “Come on Al get up, get dressed!”

So with my new valve and scar on my chest, it’s good bye and thank you for what you do best.

Just one final thing, I’m lucky it was found, repaired in time and not in the ground.

My licence from Swansea is back at last, all my heart problems a thing of the past.

The poems published in this section are creative writing by Heart Matters readers. They should not be taken as medical advice.

It isn’t always easy to express your emotions, but writing poetry can be a way of putting your feelings down on paper which many people find helpful. If you’d like your poem about any aspect of heart disease or caring for someone to appear in this section, email it to


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