CORONER RULES ON DEATH OF TEENAGER; Parents Donate Heart to Prevent Further Tragedy

Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England), January 27, 2012 | Go to article overview

CORONER RULES ON DEATH OF TEENAGER; Parents Donate Heart to Prevent Further Tragedy


Byline: KRYSTA EAVES

PARENTS who say their "lives have been turned upside down" following the unexpected death of their son have donated his heart for research.

Michael Yendall was a healthy, active 19-year-old who had "everything to live for" when he died suddenly from a heart condition.

His parents David and Tracy are still coming to terms with their "tremendous loss" but hope by donating Michael's heart, it will aid future medical research.

Yesterday, coroner Michael Sheffield recorded a verdict of natural causes at an inquest held into Michael's death at Teesside Coroner's Court.

The court heard how Tracy found her son, a promising referee, dead in his bed on Saturday, August 27.

Despite efforts by Tracy along with neighbours and emergency staff to resuscitate the former Conyers School pupil, Michael was pronounced dead.

Evidence was also given to the coroner by Dr Catherine Hobdey, a pathologist at the University Hospital of North Tees, who conducted the post-mortem examination.

Dr Hobdey said Michael was a "healthy" 19-year-old, who died after his heart stopped suddenly.

She sent his heart to Dr Mary Sheppard, a specialist in cardiac pathology at the Royal Brompton Hospital in London, who found it to be structurally healthy, with no evidence of holes or congenital defects.

Dr Hobdey said although not a lot is known about the condition, she believed Michael would have died suddenly and peacefully in his sleep.

A toxicology report showed that Michael had "quite a low level" of alcohol in his system - the equivalent of 2.5 pints of beer - but Dr Hobdey said this played no part in his death. …

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