A FORSBROOK woman died only weeks after returning from holiday, an inquest has heard.
Kathleen Mary Riley, aged 63, died at the University Hospital of North Staffordshire on April 15.
The inquest into her death took place at Her Majesty's North Staffordshire Coroners Court conducted by Her Majesty's assistant coroner Anthony Curzon on Wednesday, October 9.
The court heard that Mrs Riley, who was a retired shop assistant from Portland Drive, Forsbrook, had been on a Caribbean cruise with her husband Geoffrey Riley at the end of March to the beginning of April and on their return they had visited friends and family in Cornwall.
During the visit members of the family had been unwell with coughs, thought to have been related to some sort of virus or a cold, which did not give any cause for concern.
In a statement read to the court, Mr Riley said that his wife had been" absolutely fine" while they were away and on arriving in Cornwall, apart from a "fainting spell" on the plane going to the cruise, which had been put down to her standing up too quickly after eating.
The court heard that Mrs Riley often had trouble sleeping and had vivid dreams, often waking feeling exhausted, but it was unknown as to whether either of these were related in any way to her death.
Mr Riley and his wife had returned home on April 9 and Mrs Riley began to feel unwell the day after, April 10.
On April 11 a neighbour had called in to see Mrs Riley and said that she had been coherent and talking initially, but on returning one-and-a-half hours later Mrs Riley was incoherent, so she called an ambulance and paramedics attended to take her to the hospital where she was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit.
A CT scan revealed that there was swelling on Mrs Riley's brain, which was put down to Viral Encephalitis, and a lumbar puncture revealed that she was suffering from Type B Flu, which the court was told has a death rate of eight in 100,000.
Mrs Riley gradually deteriorated and had to put on a ventilator before she passed away on April 15.
Mr Riley said that there were no concerns or issues about the hospital team, which was "magnificent".
A post mortem examination revealed that there was abnormal swelling on Mrs Riley's brain, which was sent to a neuropathologist for examination, but that no cause for the swelling could be found, and cause of death was recorded as bronchopneumonia due to Type B Flu.
The family told the court that shortly after Mrs Riley's death one of their friends called Prudence Mills, from Portsmouth, who visited the same caravan site in Cornwall, had also died and the symptoms and cause of death recorded in her inquest by Portsmouth Coroners Court were the same.
Mr Curzons concluded the inquest stating that Mrs Riley died of natural causes.