Answers needed over death of Edwinstowe woman

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The inquest of an Edwinstowe woman who died in a car crash has been adjourned after an unusually high volume of prescribed drugs were found in her blood.

Nottinghamshire assistant deputy coroner, Jane Gillespie, was told how Gillian Smith (57) of Greenwood Avenue, suffered serious injuries when her car collided with an articulated lorry.

Mrs Smith died from multiple injuries on 18th January 2012 after being taken to King’s Mill Hospital.

At the time of her death, she had an unusually high percentage of tramadol in her blood which she had been taking as therapeutic painkillers since 2007 for a number of illnesses.

Miss Gillespie said 2.3mg of tramadol per litre of blood found in Mrs Smith’s system was a cause for concern and she needed to retire to consider her verdict further.

Mrs Smith left her home and travelled along the A6075 for a doctor’s appointment at Newark Hospital on the morning of the 18th January.

But Mrs Smith never made it to her appointment after crossing onto the wrong side of the road and colliding head on with the lorry at around 9.10am in Ollerton.

Miss Gillespie adjourned the inquest, saying the case was far from straightforward.

She said: “The medical evidence I have heard is very complex and leaves lots of unanswered questions to grapple with after hearing from six witnesses.”

Sam Woodhouse, Mrs Smith’s daughter, said despite suffering from a range of illnesses, including arthritis, chronic back pain and asthma, she never complained.

“My mum was a proud mother and grandmother, she was registered as disabled after a fall at work and had multiple other illnesses but she never complained and always had a positive outlook on life.”

The inquest was adjourned until Monday when Miss Gillespie will record her verdict.