Man choked to death on toast

Kent Messenger Maidstone - - FRONT PAGE -

The griev­ing par­ents of a vol­un­tary worker who choked while eat­ing toast say they do not want their son’s death to be in vain.

Matthew Sher­wood was at home in North­wood Road, Tanker­ton, with his mother, Mar­i­lyn, when tragedy struck.

Am­bu­lance crews were called af­ter the 40-year-old be­gan chok­ing on May 29 last year.

Paramedics re­moved two pieces of food lodged in his throat, but they were un­able to re­vive him.

Mrs Sher­wood has now told an in­quest into her son’s death that she be­lieved med­i­ca­tion he was tak­ing for long-term schizophre­nia had caused dif­fi­cul­ties with his eat­ing.

She said for two years she had been con­cerned about his swal­low­ing and him hav­ing a dry mouth.

“Matthew en­joyed eat­ing out in restau­rants and cafes; he en­joyed eat­ing meals,” she said. “But he be­came very ag­i­tated by shak­ing he de­vel­oped and had a very dry mouth. I would give him lots of wa­ter to have with his meals.”

Matthew had a care plan in place and at­tended a clinic to as­sess his well­be­ing, but med- ical notes did not record any in­stances of con­cerns about his eat­ing prob­lems.

Ev­i­dence pro­vided by a chief phar­ma­cist stated med­i­ca­tion would have been more likely to make Matthew sali­vate than leave him with a dry mouth.

Speak­ing af­ter the hear­ing, Matthew’s par­ents said: “We loved him very much. He was very in­tel­li­gent and loved an­i­mals. We don’t want his death to be in vain. We are con­cerned this could hap­pen again.”

As­sis­tant coro­ner James Dil­lon con­cluded a nar­ra­tive ver­dict.

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