Cardiac specialist Jayne is all heart

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The Oban Times is running a series of articles championing the work carried out by Argyll and Bute Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP) in the Oban, Lorn and the Isles locality. Each article features a specific service provided by the HSCP and focuses on the staff who provide that service and the role they play in making a positive difference for the people living in Oban and surrounding areas. This week we look at the work of Jayne Mahmoud.

Jayne Mahmoud is Argyll and Bute clinical cardiac physiologist based in Lorn and Islands Hospital in Oban.

She has worked out of the hospital for 13 years and also provides professional services to patients living in Islay, Mull and Campbeltown.

Her role involves the diagnosis of heart disease in adults. She performs and reports on cardiac tests, such as echocardiograms, exercise testing, ambulatory ECGs and complex lung function tests.

In 1998, she studied at Leeds University obtaining a degree in human physiology. This is the science of how the body works and is one of the fundamental disciplines of biology and modern medicine. Physiology investigates the interaction of molecules, cells, tissues and organs, and how these parts make up the whole body. Human physiology has a focus on cellular and molecular mechanisms of disease.

Jayne worked through her degree to develop an interest on expanding her specialism in cardiology. She continued to study in the field of cardiology and has been a fully qualified highly specialist cardiac physiologist for 20 years.

Highly specialist cardiac physiologists work in laboratories, operating theatres, hospital and clinic settings. Jayne also works closely with cardiologists and surgeons to diagnose and treat heart diseases. She also works with a wide range of other health and social care professionals.

Jayne said: ‘After studying and training for my degree in human physiology I developed a strong interest in cardiology and continued studying at degree level enabling me to fully qualify as a highly specialist cardiac physiologist.

‘There are a wide range of cardiac tests which means my job is varied and no two days or patients are ever the same.

‘I can honestly say my job is very rewarding and, like most health professionals, my expert field can be challenging. Heart physiology is still very interesting to me, even after 20 years of service. I definitely chose the correct career.’

Being a highly specialist cardiac physiologist requires you to keep up to date with medical guidelines and governance. You also need to train to use sophisticated computer software and programmes, be part of a team and have excellent interpersonal skills.

Jayne is part of a team that means she works off a rota to ensure a high quality service is being delivered. Being organised, prioritising and scheduling patient appointments and test results is a large part of her day.

Performing tests and producing accurate reports for other health professionals is also an essential part of her work.

Jayne added: ‘Each patient is different, which continuously challenges and assists in developing my knowledge and skills.

‘Technology has advanced immensely during my career, and is developing all the time which makes my job much more advanced and accurate.

‘The most rewarding part of my job is to see patients diagnosed, successfully treated, and observing their heart condition and general health improve. This helps keeps me motivated, and gives us all a buzz when they only require an annual or occasional follow-up.’

Jayne has spent a large part of her working life in Oban. She loves working at Lorn and Islands Hospital and the friendly staff that over the years have become really good friends.

She also enjoys living in a small friendly community and never tires of enjoying the peaceful bays, stunning countryside and sunsets that are such a pleasure in this part of Scotland.

Jayne’s spare time is spent looking after her two horses, two cats
and roaming the hills and beaches with her two dogs.