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Accidental death verdict on 40-year-old mum


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Accidental death verdict on 40-year-old mum

 

 

Published Date: 03 July 2009 By Garth ApThomas

 

A CORONER has recorded a verdict of accidental death at the inquest held into the death of a 40-year-old Wrexham mother.

 

Marie Richardson, of Bryn Hafod, died in March at the Maelor Hospital.

 

A post mortem examination found that she had died as a result of a haemorrhage involving the pituitary gland, which plays a key role in the body's hormonal system.

 

The inquest was told a post mortem examination had been conducted by Dr Anthony Burdge.

 

Giving evidence, Dr Burdge said that it was probable the bleeding had been caused as a result of thinning of the blood and not a trauma such as a fall.

 

Contributory factors in Mrs Richardson's death had been Cushing's disease, a very rare condition involving a hormone disorder, and bronchial pneumonia.

 

The court was told by Mrs Richardson's husband, Andrew, that his wife had started to experience ill health, including swollen legs and constant backache.

 

Her mobility was badly affected. Mrs Richardson was admitted to the Maelor Hospital.

 

Consultant physician Dr Stephen Stanaway said that as part of the treatment, Mrs Richardson received a small dose of a blood-thinning drug to help ensure she did not fall victim to clots.

 

She had been given a scan involving the pituitary and there was no evidence of a tumour.

 

It transpired the post-mortem had found Mrs Richardson did have a tumour, which had experienced bleeding.

 

Dr Stanaway said that Mrs Richardson had not liked the scanning process and moved at one point ? it was important for patients to remain still.

 

Acting coroner John Gittins asked if Mrs Richardson would have been administered with blood thinner if the tumour had been known about at the time of treatment.

 

Dr Stanaway said it would have to be a balanced decision but he felt that she would have been.

 

Legal representatives for Mrs Richardson's family and the NHS Trust were present at the inquest. Dr Stanaway was asked a series of questions about whether anything further could have been done about Mrs Richardson's treatment while at the Maelor.

 

He said that with hindsight the only potential other avenue may have been if she had been given steroids.

 

But Dr Stanaway stressed he doubted this would have been successful, emphasising Mrs Richardson was a very poorly woman and it would be impossible to say that administering steroids would have saved her.

 

Recording his verdict of accidental death Mr Gittins emphasised: "This is not an indication of responsibility, blame or judgement.

"That is not my jurisdiction.

 

My very sincere condolences go to the family."

 

 

(This really upsets me. This woman could have been saved.)

 

Hugs,

Robin

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Do you have the link for this? Some of our "favorite" endos and surgeons have email addresses and it might be useful to forward this to them to remind them of the risks of failure to diagnose.

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She had been given a scan involving the pituitary and there was no evidence of a tumour.

 

It transpired the post-mortem had found Mrs Richardson did have a tumour, which had experienced bleeding.

 

Dr Stanaway said that Mrs Richardson had not liked the scanning process and moved at one point ? it was important for patients to remain still.

 

Blame the patient!

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That poor woman. This article scared the hell outta me, how many people are walking around with these ticking time bombs in their heads...Holly included.

:)

Jenny.

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My only thought of the steroids mentioned was if by having the tumor hemorrhage, she would have dropped low, and went AI and needed steroid replacements to bring her back up. I don't know. But we all know you don't normally treat Cushing's with steroids. Not unless you drop too low.

 

This serves as another reminder to those not cured yet, we need to get diagnosed as soon as we can. We must NEVER give up! I always felt like a ticking time bomb, waiting to go off. It was me against the disease. The race was on, and I won. It's too bad this poor lady didn't! It also proves we need better imaging available and better testing available to us! Her scan never picked up her tumor. If it had, they might have taken her more seriously in the first place and she might have been saved.

 

Hugs,

Gracie

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Robin,

Thank you for posting this story. I read it last night and I have thought about it ever since. Marie Richardson's story is haunting, not only because she wasn't diagnosed or treated correctly, but because I survived a rupture right next to my pituitary, and I thought for safety sake, we should all know the symptoms of a rupture:

*sudden onset of a severe headache (described as the "worst headache of my life"), almost a thunderclap of a headache.

*nausea and vomiting soon after the headache starts

*stiff neck

*transient loss of vision or consciousness

*acute sensitivity to light, sound, smells

*blood flows into the subarachnoid space (between the brain and the skull) it increases pressure on the brain making the person confused and lethargic.

 

If you have these symptoms, get to a hospital, call 911! It is VERY rare that a pituitary tumor ruptures, but you should know the symptoms and you should discuss these symptoms with your loved ones in case you can't communicate, make sure they know to call 911. I hope I'm not scaring anyone, that is not my intent.

 

My heart goes out to the Richardson Family.

 

MountainQueen

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Wrexham is a small town on the border of England and Wales...it is administered under Welsh government and in many ways lacks many of the British facilities. Wales did manage to get a law passed concerning presription charges and it was agreed that all Welsh people should be exempt from NHS prescription charges. The closest large hospital is Chester or Liverpool but Manchester probably has the best endocrine facility. ( Manchester is all of 50 miles away....pretty close when you consider the size of the USA)

 

Tragic indeed.

 

Dave

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How very sad & unnecessary..my thoughts are with Maries family,

 

The steroids might of been to rid the fluid build up, if it was severe enough, it could of caused the bleed & ridding fluid would also ease & improve the lung function, thankfully worked in another cushie I know..

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