AN INQUEST into the death of a 53-year-old woman found she died from sepsis, which was a consequence of a heart infection caused from years of drug use.

Alison Walker was found collapsed in her Clayton-le-Moors home on July 29.

Coroner Richard Taylor told the inquest in Blackburn, that Ms Walker had a history of drug use, particularly heroin and cannabis, and some issues with alcohol.

Her son, Dylan, who was present at the hearing, said she had been feeling ill in the days leading up to her death, had pain in her legs and thought she had a urinary tract infection.

A statement from consultant pathologist Dr Mark Sissons said: “The autopsy showed infection of the heart valve which has resulted in sepsis.

“She also had cirrhosis of the liver and because of this her immune system had been weakened and therefore she was susceptible to infection.

“Because of her chronic intravenous drug abuse in the past it’s suggested that this has contributed to the infection in the heart lining which led to the sepsis, which has killed her.

“Therefore a medical cause of death would be sepsis caused by infection in the heart due to drug use and liver cirrhosis.”

Coroner Richard Taylor said: “There was methadone in her system but it was at a therapeutic level, which rules out drug toxicity.

“The conclusion I want to return is that this is a natural causes death, and Alison Walker died on July 29 at her home in Arthur Street, from a natural cause.”