‘Heartbreaking’ death of mum-of-three 10 years after Caesarean

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A MOTHER-of-three’s death from complications following a Caesarean section has been described as ‘heartbreaking’ by a coroner.

Alison Parkinson, of Laburnum Road, Waterlooville, died of pneumonia on February 20 last year.

Six days earlier the 33-year-old had been admitted Queen Alexandra Hospital, in Cosham, for a skin graft operation to treat an infected wound.

It was one of a long line of medical problems ultimately caused by an MRSA infection she contracted after having a Caesarean operation in 2002.

Doctors allowed Mrs Parkinson to return home on February 16, but over the next two days her condition rapidly deteriorated and she died after being taken back into hospital.

Yesterday a coroner’s court at Portsmouth Guildhall heard the doctor who made the decision, Lieutenant Colonel Nicholas Bennett, say his patient had pleaded with him to return home.

‘It was a surprise to me that she was so bright,’ he said. ‘There was no reason not to keep her in longer if I had felt that was what was appropriate. But my decision on that day was to allow her to go home.’

Delivering a narrative verdict, Portsmouth and South East Hampshire Coroner David Horsley said there was no evidence of neglect by staff at the hospital.

He said: ‘It seems to me that what I’m looking at is a heartbreaking story of a woman who for the last 10 years has endured extreme discomfort and ill health.

‘It is heartbreaking not only for her but also for her young family and caring relatives.

‘I believe that the underlying cause of her death occurred 10 years ago and she experienced long-term complications resulting from a surgical procedure.’

After the inquest her father Martin Cullimore, 59, of Minters Lepe, Waterlooville, said the family still had concerns that Mrs Parkinson had been allowed to return home too soon.

He said: ‘We just believe that if they had carried out the same procedure they had followed on all her other discharges from hospital her rate of survival would have been higher. We have never seen her as she was on Sunday after she was sent home. And that was the last time we saw her.’