A WOMAN who couldn’t eat solid food for two years has thanked surgeons at Northwick Park and St Mark’s hospitals for having her life back.

Diana Wassing, 71, of Northwood, endured two failed procedures at another hospital after her stomach pushed itself up into her chest. It’s a condition known as a para-oesophageal hernia.

She was told to eat pureed food, but weeks stretched into months and years, with any attempt to eat solids resulting in gagging and vomiting.

Diana, of Foxfield Close, said: “In retrospect, I was far too trusting and should have sought a second opinion.”

Her condition worsened when she started getting reflux where acid from her stomach was washed back into her throat.

“I’d wake up at night, literally gasping for air,” she said.

A chance encounter with a woman who had suffered the same problem put her in touch with surgeon Alberto Martinez Isla.

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Three months after her third procedure, she tentatively ate a piece of chicken – the first solid food she could keep down in nearly two years.

Diana is now working her way through a ‘bucket list’ of food previously denied her.

“I was in despair until Alberto said he’d do his best to put things right,” she said. “I’ve had a burger, Sunday roast and Chinese, so pizza and curry are next on the list!”

Mr Isla said: “The two nets that were surgically placed to avoid the stomach moving out of place again had become badly twisted and were effectively choking this patient’s oesophagus.

“It was a tricky procedure, but her quality of life was badly affected and I wanted to do all I could.

“I’d always advise patients to seek a second opinion if they aren’t happy. No-one in discomfort or pain should simply accept one person’s opinion. No-one should be afraid to exercise that right.”