Pensioner died at Bourton-on-the-Water nursing home two days after hospital operation
4:00pm Wednesday 20th June 2012 in News
A FRAIL 84-year-old man died in a Cotswold nursing home after undergoing surgery for a fractured hip which he suffered in a fall, an inquest was told.
Gordon Williams died at the Salmondsbury House nursing home in Bourton-on-the-Water on January 18 this year.
The Gloucester inquest was told that Mr Williams had fallen over in his rooms on January 5 and suffered a fractured hip.
He underwent an operation at Cheltenham General Hospital. He recovered sufficiently well to be released and returned to the nursing home on January 16, but his condition deteriorated and he died two days later.
In a statement, Beryl Ratcliffe, the nursing home manager, said Mr Williams was assessed as being suitable to become a resident in the home in March 2011.
He was a thin, frail man who had neglected himself and he moved in on March 14. He settled well and his condition improved although he did not socialise with other residents, she said. He had a zimmer frame in his room, but did not use it.
Staff found that Mr Williams had fallen and he told them his legs had just given way. He was taken to hospital for surgery and when he returned after the operation, he was extremely frail and died on January 18.
In a statement, orthopaedic consultant Simon Clint said Mr Williams had a number of other falls in the week leading up to the one when he suffered the hip fracture.
The surgery was uneventful and Mr Williams, despite a number of problems, did recover and make progress. On January 16, he was well enough to return to the nursing home and was keen to do so.
Consultantpathologist Dr Keith McCarthy carried out a post mortem examination and found that Mr Williams was frail with a body mass index of only 17.6. He weighed only 51kg.
The doctor gave the cause of death as acute heart failure due to a fractured right femur against a background of acute pancreatitis, chronic obstructive airways disease and heart disease.
Gloucestershire deputy coroner David ooley said any of the diseases that Mr Williams was suffering could have caused the fall that led to his death.
Mr Dooley said he had to consider the reasons for Mr Williams’ fall and there was no evidence of a slip, trip or misjudgement that caused it.
The collapse, he said, was caused by weakness brought on by natural disease processes. There was no evidence of a deliberate act that had gone wrong and the coroner recorded a verdict of death by natural causes.