Surgical needle in body of Wrexham woman did not kill her

Published date: 20 February 2014 |
Published by: Staff reporter
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A SURGICAL needle was found in the body of a 47-year-old woman who died.

The discovery was made by pathologist Dr Anthony Burdge as he conducted a post-mortem examination for Karen Marie Jones, of Conway Drive, Wrexham.

But during an inquest at the Guildhall in Wrexham, Dr Burdge stressed the 13mm needle was not responsible for Mrs Jones’ death.

She died as a result of cardiac arrhythmia due to aortic valve disease.

Mrs Jones, a shop supervisor, had a heart operation in October 2012 conducted by the Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital.

Following the surgery she made a good recovery. However, on March 7 last year Mrs Jones collapsed and was taken to Wrexham’s Maelor Hospital. Doctors tried to resuscitate her but she died.

Telling the inquest about his discovery of the surgical needle, Dr Burdge said: “It appeared to be free. It came away, it was not stuck in any tissues. It is very thin, like a tiny wire.”

Dr Burdge said the replacement heart valve from Mrs Jones’ operation was satisfactory, and under questioning from coroner John Gittins said there was not a breakdown of the site.

Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital consultant surgeon Richard Williams gave evidence to the court.

Mr Williams said following Dr Burdge’s discovery he had been through all records involved and there had been no mention made of a missing needle.

“It is the type that we use. Somehow it has slipped through checks,” said Mr Williams.

Mr Williams said the implement had been found around the pericardial cavity and it would not have caused damage.

He added Mrs Jones’ medical condition in 2012 had warranted an operation and without surgery her prognosis would have been poor.

Mr Gittins recorded a conclusion of death due to natural causes.

Addressing members of Mrs Jones’ family Mr Gittins said: “You have lost a young woman.

“It is a big loss for everyone who knew her.”

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