Newmarket: Man suffered cardiac arrest over breakfast

A 56-YEAR-OLD man with health problems suffered a cardiac arrest while eating breakfast at a Little Chef restaurant in west Suffolk.

Steven Barclay, of Fordham Road, Newmarket, died on December 15 last year at West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds.

Today, an inquest was held into the death of Mr Barclay, who had a history of epilepsy and thyroid problems, as well as psychological issues.

The inquest heard how he was having breakfast with his carers at the Little Chef at Barton Mills when he stopped breathing. Carer Scott Clarke said he seemed to be having a seizure.

They placed him in a comfortable position and an ambulance was called. A pulse was checked for, but they could not detect one so they conducted CPR until the paramedics arrived.

But Suffolk Coroner Dr Peter Dean said: “We hear sadly he passed away despite all the attempts made by hospital staff and those at the scene to assist him.”

The cause of death was given as cardiac arrest with diffuse cerebral infarction (stroke) and obstruction of the airway given as contributory factors. Food had been found in Mr Barclay’s airway, but Dr Dean said it was unclear whether choking caused events or it was the cardiac arrest that led to the choking.

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Given these two possibilities, Dr Dean ruled a narrative verdict at the inquest, which was held in Bury.