Kelly Landry’s battle with heart disease

Kelly Landry has lived with a rare heart condition all her life. However, it wasn't until the late stages of her first pregnancy, that she actually realised it. 

Kelly is the loving mother of two young girls, Charlize 5, and Thea 3.  Kelly was fortunate to spend many years travelling the world working on Channel 9’s Getaway program, visiting some of the world’s most extravagant and remote locations.  Kelly says she was very lucky that her undiagnosed heart condition did not flare up until she was in the late stages of her first pregnancy.

A country girl at heart, Kelly grew up in regional Victoria and has always battled fatigue.  Being a busy teenager, doctors at the time put it down to adolescent anxiety and stress.  Connecting the dots now, Kelly believes her heart condition has plagued her life all along.

About half way through her first pregnancy things went downhill for Kelly.  She often felt fatigued, but when she compared herself with other pregnant women she thought, how are they doing this?  It was a challenge for her to get through the day.

At 35 weeks Kelly was hospitalised and an ECG machine diagnosed atrial fibrillation.  Up until that point all her check-ups had focussed on the wellbeing of her unborn child and it wasn’t until Kelly’s health deteriorated that doctors turned the stethoscope to Kelly’s heart.  It was at this time when she realised her birth plan was being thrown out the window and she was in the hands of her medical team.  Fortunately, Kelly could deliver a healthy baby girl.

Kelly was diagnosed with Left Ventricle Non-Compaction and Ebstine’s Anomoly, conditions that mean her heart muscle is malformed and essentially her heart does not pump properly.  Following her diagnosis of a genetic heart condition, Kelly insisted her family also be tested and it was found to be a condition suffered by her mother, sister, nephew and Kelly’s daughters, although too young right now, are at an increased risk.

Bravely, with her heart condition diagnosed, Kelly went onto to have a second pregnancy, this time Kelly was placed on strict bedrest from 20 weeks and was under constant medical care in hospital.  It was a particularly trying as Kelly already had Charlize at home and was desperate to get her second baby through to the safe-zone of 37 weeks.  Kelly thanks her amazing medical team that provided her with the best round the clock care in helping her achieve that goal and her beautiful bundle of joy, Thea was born in 2014.

Whilst Kelly’s heart health is still precarious and things like stress exasperate her situation, she is determined to remain as healthy as possible to ensure she is around for as long as possible to see her little girls grow up.

Kelly is an example of the one in three Australian women who are effected by heart disease. Learn more about the risk factors and symptons of heart disease for women.

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