Family of former Grangemouth man want to raise awareness of all stroke symptoms after he died, aged 53

The devastated family of a man who died days after a massive stroke suffered while he waited in A&E want to raise awareness of all the symptoms of the condition.

They are also fundraising for the Stroke Association, the charity which supports research and campaigns for better services, as well as helping those who have had a stroke.

Anthony James Bundy, known as Tony, was out shopping on June 25 this year when he became unwell. He was taken to the A&E department at Glasgow Royal Infirmary and was left to wait in a corridor for five hours before suffering the massive stroke.

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He was then rushed to the intensive care unit at the city’s Queen Elizabeth University Hospital but never regained consciousness and died four days later surrounded by his family.

Tony Bundy with with Selena.  Pic: ContributedTony Bundy with with Selena.  Pic: Contributed
Tony Bundy with with Selena. Pic: Contributed

Tony was only 53-years-old.

His loved ones said he had been fit and healthy until a few weeks before his death.

Tony and his family were well-known in the Falkirk area. He and wife Selena raised their family in Grangemouth – son James is a councillor in Falkirk and daughter Anthea was a world champion highland dancer. They also had Selena’s two children from a previous marriage, Christine and Douglas.

The couple had only recently moved to Tullibody where Tony was running his new consultancy business after a career in the housing industry, latterly as the commercial manager for Persimmon Homes.

They were shopping in Costco in Glasgow’s Springburn when he suddenly couldn’t stand, felt dizzy, suffered cold sweats, started speaking slowly and his eyes struggled to focus.

Two weeks previously he had gone to his GP after a suffering a similar episode while at work. Tony queried whether his “funny turn” could have been a mild stroke but after tests, the GP ruled this out.

Selena was unable to get him into the car to rush him to hospital and called 999 but on that day there was a technical fault with the emergency line and some calls weren’t initially getting through.

However, he was eventually taken to the city’s Royal Infirmary where he was triaged and the family say he was told he was not presenting with the symptoms of a stroke and should wait for a further assessment.

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Daughter Anthea had rushed to her mum’s side and the pair were with him in the corridor when he had the basilar artery ischaemic stroke. It occurs when the blood flow to the brain is interrupted by a blockage or rupture.

Despite the efforts of medical staff at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Tony died on June 29.

His funeral took place in a packed St Mary’s Church in Stirling on July 31.

In the days after his sudden death his family vowed to do all they could to raise awareness that although the FAST test is widely used to test for a stroke, these are not the only symptoms.

The FAST test gives these pointers: Facial weakness – Can the person smile? Has their mouth or eye drooped?; Arm weakness – Can the person raise both arms?; Speech problems – Can the person speak clearly and understand what you say?; Time to call 999 – if you see any of these signs.

Anthea, 28, said: “When my dad initially took ill, his symptoms included dizziness, an inability to stand, vomiting, and his eyes were struggling to concentrate. With medical professionals focusing on examining my dad’s face and arms, and hearing that his speech was not slurred, they missed the fact that my dad was having a stroke.

"The sole focus on the FAST test by the medical professionals meant that my dad did not get fast treatment, and as a result of that, he is longer with us today.”

James, 26, added that because his dad could lift his arms the medical staff appeared to rule out a stroke.

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He said: “We want to raise awareness of all the symptoms of a potential stroke, not just the FAST test.”

Wife Selena called for more understanding of all symptoms, including vertigo, dizziness, cold sweats, nausea, vomiting, slow speech and an inability to stand.

She said: “I was fully aware of the FAST campaign for stroke awareness, but by not being an expert, I thought these were the only symptoms of stroke. If I had not known the FAST campaign, I would have Googled Tony’s symptoms and found that he may have been suffering a stroke, which he ultimately was.

“Whilst I understand the need for concise phrases for public health messages, it is my belief that FAST is too simplified and does not incorporate enough of the potential symptoms of stroke, and as a result, my husband did not get the fast treatment he should have got.

“There must be a greater understanding of all the potential symptoms of stroke amongst the general public and the medical profession.”

The family’s fundraising for the Stroke Association had an initial target of £300 but that was quickly exceeded and now stands at over £5200. Anthea also plans to take part in the Great Scottish Run in her dad’s memory later this year. The JustGiving page can be found here

A spokesperson for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said: “While we cannot discuss individual patient cases publicly, we would like to express our deepest sympathy for Mr Bundy’s family and loved ones at this difficult time, we will reach out to discuss any concerns they may have around his treatment directly.

"NHSGGC staff follow robust guidelines when identifying potential strokes, which are regularly reviewed.”

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