Nelson woman dies after overdose of anti-depressants

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A WOMAN suffering from severe depression and anxiety overdosed on her medication just days after her husband died, an inquest heard.

Denise Sherwin (55) died at her home in Lomeshaye Place, Nelson, on January 6th, after taking an overdose of anti-depressant Venlafaxine. Her family told the inquest at Burnley Coroner’s Court her husband Brian had been “her rock”, and after losing him just two days earlier she was said to be “extremely down.”

Mrs Sherwin was also suffering from a heart condition and relied on Mr Sherwin to help oversee her medication which he kept in a locked briefcase. After conducting a post mortem examination, pathologist Dr. Zuhair Twaij said the dosage of pills was so high it had resulted in poisoning. It was unclear how she obtained the fatal amount of tablets.

Her sister Valerie Dawson said the family had rallied to help Mrs Sherwin after Mr Sherwin’s death and had been with her on the day she died, helping to organise his funeral.

Mrs Dawson said: “It was a terrible shock for her and she did struggle to cope. All she kept asking was to get her through this. The anxiety was so bad.

“It was just a normal day. She was only on her own for about 10 minutes in the kitchen. She said she had spilt some water and then within a split second went into a fit.”

East Lancashire Coroner Mr Richard Taylor returned a narrative verdict. He said: “Only days before, her husband, who had been her rock, died of natural causes. She was prescribed Venlafaxine for her depression and anxiety and by some means had taken too many of these which sent her into a fit from which she sadly never recovered. I dismiss any suggestion that she deliberately took her own life. She died from Venlafaxine which was prescribed to her.”