West Sussex pensioner dies after stomach tube leak

Eric and Maureen Chivers from Emsworth. Eric is heaping praise on the NHS for the superb teatment he recieved when he was in hospital with a serious illness     'Picture: Ian Hargreaves

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A CORONER has supported the medical decisions taken by doctors after a woman died following surgery.

Betty Garnham, 87, from Chichester, was admitted to Bognor War Memorial Hospital in November last year, when her appetite started to decrease.

Doctors decided to carry out an operation to insert a feeding tube into her stomach.

She had surgery at St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester, before being transferred back to Bognor where her condition quickly worsened and she died shortly afterwards.

A post-mortem revealed that there was a leak around the site where the feeding tube was entered and she developed peritonitis.

Recording a verdict of misadventure at an inquest, Karen Henderson, assistant deputy coroner, said: ‘The process in which the decision to insert a tube was made was entirely appropriate.’

She said it was a straightforward procedure which the doctor had carried out many times before and was ‘entirely reasonable’.