Thursday, September 10, 2009

Bug killed doctor by eating through his artificial heart valve (UK)

A clinical psychologist died after bacteria ate a hole in an artificial valve fitted to his heart and stopped it working. Dr Keith Jones died of a sudden heart attack at Royal Derby Hospital in October last year. A postmortem examination revealed part of the valve, fitted 12 months previously, had been destroyed by the bacteria, called staph aureus. This stopped blood being pumped around his body. Giving evidence at an inquest, Dr Ivan Robinson, who conducted the examination, said: "I think the sudden catastrophic nature of Mr Jones' death was because the valve gave way. "The bacteria destroyed the substance of the valve. "This meant the heart was not pumping effectively. "There was a build-up of blood behind the left ventricle (one of four chambers of the heart)." Derby and South Derbyshire Coroner's Court heard that Dr Jones, 57, from Turnditch, fell ill with endocarditis – an inflammation of the inner layer of the heart – in 2007

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