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‘Fit and healthy’ boy died of natural causes

A “fit and healthy” Sandbach schoolboy died after suffering a cardiac arrest in class, a coroner concluded.

Seven-year-old Patryk Milner collapsed at Offley Primary Academy on the morning of 30th September 2020, an inquest in Warrington heard last Tuesday.

In a statement read out by the senior coroner for Cheshire Alan Moore, Patryk’s mum Agnieszka Milner described her son as “an active child who enjoyed playing sport”.

She explained that Patryk had no health issues that his family or doctors were aware of.
Mrs Milner said that 30th September was a normal day for Patryk who, accompanied by his mum, had gone to school on his scooter.

Her statement added that 10 days previously, Patryk had complained about a sore throat, and she had given him Calpol.

His sore throat persisted and a week later, on 27th September, Mrs Milner contacted his GP at Ashfields Primary Care Centre, who assessed his symptoms over the phone.

The next day Patryk was examined by his GP, Dr Priyan Gunawardena, who described him as a “fit and healthy young boy”, who was “very sporty”, and diagnosed Patryk with a mild form of laryngitis.

Giving evidence on what happened during his lesson, teacher David Ellis stated that it was his first day at the school and that he had not previously met Patryk.

Mr Ellis had just finished his first lesson of the day and it was when he asked the children to pack up their things that he was notified that Patryk was unresponsive.

Mr Ellis placed him into the recovery position before carrying out CPR with the assistance of another staff member before the paramedics took over on arrival following a 999 call.

Patryk was rushed to Leighton Hospital before being transferred to Alder Hey Children’s Hospital on Merseyside where he died two days later, on 2nd October.

Speaking at the inquest, Alder Hey paediatric consultant Dr Michael Bowes, gave evidence about an arrythmia – an abnormal rhythm of the heart.

The inquest heard that it could be very sudden and appear without warning. Dr Bowes described it as a “horrible, sneaky condition” and likened it to “a spelling mistake” in a person’s DNA.

He added that the likely cause of Patryk’s death was a sudden cardiac dysrhythmia, which was also supported by fellow Alder Hey consultant Dr George Kokai, who also gave evidence at the inquest.

The court was told that Patryk’s parents took the decision to donate their son’s organs which later saved the lives of three children.

Mrs Milner’s statement said that she and husband Andrew Milner “are totally devasted by the unexpected loss of our son”.

Mr Moore concluded that the condition that resulted in Patryk’s death was sudden cardiac dysrhythmia and that he died of natural causes.

He told the inquest: “Losing Patryk must have been utterly heart-breaking. I want to commend the family for their courage and dignity. Let’s finish by remembering Patryk and what Patryk did by donating his organs, he saved lives.”

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