Rossendale man dies from septicaemia following 'very rare' fungal infection (From Lancashire Telegraph)
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Rossendale man dies from septicaemia following 'very rare' fungal infection
A ROSSENDALE man died from septicaemia after he contracted a ‘very, very rare’ fungal infection, an inquest heard.
Andrew Brownhill, 61, of Reeds Close, Crawshawbooth, suffered from pancreatic cancer and died after a procedure at Royal Blackburn Hospital on July 25.
Blackburn coroner Michael Singleton said he was ‘somewhat concerned’ that advice from the hospital’s consultant microbiologist had been ignored in the days before Mr Brownhill’s death.
Mr Brownhill’s case was the only time the infection, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, has been found in more than 70,000 blood cultures taken by East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust since 2006.
Mr Brownhill, who served on the committee at Rossendale United Junior Football Club for more than a decade, was admitted to hospital with stomach pains and jaundice on July 13 and an attempt was made to drain his bile duct on July 19.
However Dr Mohammed Mansour told the inquest that Mr Brownhill suffered fever and vomiting after the procedure, known as a PTC.
And follow-up tests found that his liver was functioning abnormally.
On July 23, the hospital’s consultant microbiologist, Kirsty Burch, rang doctors to advise a course of micafungin, an antifungal drug, after she found evidence of yeast in Mr Brownhill’s blood.
The following day she advised that a different drug, microsomal amphotericin, should be used after she became aware that Mr Brownhill’s liver had deteriorated.
Neither treatment was given to the patient.
And instead he underwent a second PTC, under anaesthesia, and died shortly afterwards.
Dr Mansour said: “He was really well before the second PTC.
“He was improving. I’m not sure what happened.
“But afterwards he was gasping for breath. I cannot explain what happened.”
Dr Mansour added that he had ‘no idea’ how the fungus had appeared as he had never seen it before, such was its rarity.
An independent pathologist, Dr Stephen Mills, said the Saccharomyces cerevisiae was the most likely cause of septicaemia, although he could not pinpoint its exact origin.
In concluding a verdict of death by septicaemia, Mr Singleton said: “This is a rare but recognised complication of a medical procedure.”
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