Robert Webb has revealed that he has resumed filming Back series two after his life-saving heart operation.
The Peep Show star, 47, underwent surgery in October last year after a routine medical check on the set of his sitcom revealed he had a prolapse in his heart.
Robert revealed filming had resumed on Tuesday after both his life-saving operation and the coronavirus lockdown forced production to stop.
Back to it: Robert Webb has revealed that he has resumed filming Back series two after his life-saving heart operation
Taking to Twitter, the actor penned: ‘Filming the last 14 scenes of Back series 2 next week. Was delayed last Nov after I found out my heart had turned itself into a magimix blender & I needed surgery.
‘Then we did a few more weeks in March. Then plague stopped play. Now trying again. Ooh.’
Seeing the humorous side of things, Robert revealed that he was at three different stages of his life during the series.
He added: ‘This means that in any given scene of this series I will a) just have heard I’m weeks away from heart failure, b) 3 months out of open heart surgery & a bit knackered or c) 10 months out & feeling very well thanks.’
Scary! The Peep Show star, 47, underwent surgery in October last year after a routine medical check on the set of his sitcom revealed he had a prolapse in his heart (pictured with co-star David Mitchell)
Robert quipped: ‘Continuity problems have never been so marvellous.’
Simon Blackwell-penned series, Back, follows a dysfunctional family running a pub it stars Robert and his Peep Show co-star David Mitchell.
Series one kicked off as Stephen (Mitchell), inherits the venue following the death of his father, but his moment of glory is marred when his charismatic former foster brother (Webb) turns up at the funeral, hoping to become a part of the family again.
Robert and David played hapless flatmates Mark Corrigan and Jeremy Usbourne in Peep Show for twelve years until the show came to an end in 2015.
Statement: Robert revealed filming had resumed on Tuesday after both his life-saving operation and the coronavirus lockdown forced production to stop
In April, the actor revealed he was told his heart would ‘fail’ due to an undiagnosed condition.
He underwent surgery in October last year after a routine medical check on the set of his sitcom Back revealed he had a prolapse in his heart.
The actor and writer was referred to a cardiologist and given an echocardiogram, an ultrasound of the heart, which showed years of alcoholism had accelerated the undiagnosed condition.
Iconic: Robert and David played hapless flatmates Mark Corrigan and Jeremy Usbourne in Peep Show for twelve years until the show came to an end in 2015
He was told he had a mitral valve prolapse, which can be asymptomatic but could cause him to suffer a heart attack within months.
WHAT IS A LEAKY MITRAL VALVE?
The mitral valve is a small flap in the heart that stops blood flowing the wrong way. If damaged, it can affect how blood flows around the body.
A ‘leaky’ mitral valve is the nickname for a condition called mitral regurgitation, when it doesn’t close tightly enough and blood goes the wrong way.
This puts a strain on the heart and often causes symptoms such as breathlessness and fatigue, Harvard Medical School states.
In the long-run, mitral regurgitation can lead to serious complications such as atrial fibrillation (an irregular heartbeat) and heart failure.
It is often caused by mitral valve prolapse, when the flaps – called leaflets – bulge back into the left atrium as the heart contracts.
However, a leaky mitral valve also can happen with age, through general ‘wear and tear’ of the valve, the NHS says.
Other causes include cardiomyopathy (stiff heart chamber muscles), an infection of the inner lining of the heart, or congenital heart disease.
Statistics suggest the NHS undertakes around 2,200 mitral valve repair operations each year.
Robert wrote in the Observer: ‘The heart doctor has a distinctive handshake, offered palm up with the fingers splayed. It looks like an apology and as soon as I sit down it becomes clear why he’s sorry.
‘”I’m not saying you’re going to have a heart attack in the next fortnight,” he says slowly.
‘”But if the problem isn’t addressed, then in the next two or four or six months… this heart will fail.”‘
His brush with death came at the same time he finished editing Come Again, his debut novel in which forty-something Luke dies from an unseen condition.
Luke’s widow, Kate, returns to 1992 where she meets her husband for the first time, but with the knowledge of his disease.
The romance follows her attempts to navigate knowing he might die as she tries to fall in love with him again.
And Robert said he thought his imagination may have been trying to tell him something about his own ‘dodgy ticker’ while writing it.
His condition, a mitral valve prolapse, caused him to feel lethargic, which he put down to his age and not treating his body with respect.
Although the condition was not caused by his drinking, he was told that alcohol abuse had accelerated it and he has now quit alcohol completely.
‘I thought, “This is what you feel like when you’re 47 and you treat your body like a skip”,’ he told The Sunday Times.
‘I’d get really tired very quickly — I was very tired — but I thought, “F**k it, I’m 47”. I didn’t realise how unwell I was.’
Robert said his alcohol abuse was ‘certainly an addiction’.
He said: ‘It crawled up so gradually that I was slow-killing myself. I drank a lot of beer during the day, on my own. I was thinking of [alcohol] at any given time of the day.’
The mitral valve is a small flap in the heart that stops blood flowing the wrong way and if there are issues with it it can affect how blood flows around the body.
The comedian has quit drinking, having ‘drank a lot of beer during the day’ on his own during the worst of his alcoholism (pictured with David in February)
A prolapse in the valve is when it becomes too floppy and does not close tightly.
According to the NHS, it is commonplace for someone to not know they have the condition, as it can be asymptomatic.
It can, however, lead to tiredness, as he experienced. Other side-effects include dizziness, breathlessness, noticeable palpitations or mitral regurgitation.
Scary: His condition, a mitral valve prolapse, caused him to feel lethargic, which he put down to his age and not treating his body with respect (pictured with David in 2015)
WHAT IS HEART FAILURE?
Heart failure means that the heart is unable to pump blood around the body properly. It usually occurs because the heart has become too weak or stiff.
Heart failure doesn’t mean your heart has stopped working – it just needs some support to help it work better. It can occur at any age, but is most common in older people.
Heart failure is a long-term condition that tends to get gradually worse over time. It can’t usually be cured, but the symptoms can often be controlled for many years.
The main symptoms of heart failure are:
- breathlessness after activity or at rest
- feeling tired most of the time and finding exercise exhausting
- swollen ankles and legs
Some people also experience other symptoms, such as a persistent cough, a fast heart rate, and dizziness.
Symptoms can develop quickly (acute heart failure) or gradually over weeks or months (chronic heart failure).
See your GP if you experience persistent or gradually worsening symptoms of heart failure.