Woodbridge/Ipswich: Man died after heart pump issue, inquest hears

Praise for staff at Ipswich Hospital

Praise for staff at Ipswich Hospital

A RETIRED police officer died from a heart problem after an eight-year battle, an inquest has heard.

James Reynolds, of Grundisburgh Road, Woodbridge, was referred to Ipswich Hospital by his GP who was concerned about his worsening condition on September 5 last year. The 62-year-old, who had been fitted with a pacemaker, died the following day.

A statement from his widow Anne, read by Suffolk’s deputy coroner Kevin McCarthy, said: “About eight years ago James was treated for asthma and a silent heart attack but it was found it was not asthma and he was referred to Papworth.

“He had a pacemaker and defibrillator fitted which kept him stable and he was on oxygen at home.”

The inquest, held last week, heard Mr Reynolds, who was on the heart transplant list, was admitted to critical care at Papworth Hospital two years ago and was given two days to live. He took part in a research project and had a heart pump fitted.

Mrs Reynolds’ statement added: “James was in hospital for 66 days before being discharged.

“He came home and his quality of life was good for two years.”

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Mr Reynolds’ condition deteriorated and he was removed from the heart transplant list and told he would receive palliative care.

He was admitted to Ipswich Hospital on September 5 after becoming confused and suffering hallucinations.

The statement also said: “On September 6 I called the hospital and spoke to the ward clerk and asked if James had had a good night and whether he needed anything.

“She said he was OK and had been told to tell me he was really sorry but I didn’t think anything of it.”

Mr Reynolds died later that afternoon and the cause was recorded as cardiac failure and end stage dilated cardiomyopathy.

Giving a narrative verdict, Mr McCarthy said: “Mr Reynolds died of a complication of a pre-existing natural disease following detachment of the wires to his assisted heart pump in circumstances which remain unclear.

“You had a very brave father and a brave husband. He suffered long but he was with you and remember him as the man he was.”