Bell ringer died from wasp st­ing

The Wokingham Paper - - NEWS - By GEMMA DAVID­SON

A ‘FIT AND HEALTHY’ grand­fa­ther from Wok­ing­ham died from se­vere ana­phy­lac­tic shock after be­ing stung by wasps in his back gar­den, an in­quest has heard.

David John Creasy, 74, of Arthur Road, died on July 11 this year after be­ing stung while clear­ing a wasps nest by his pa­tio door.

Mr Creasy was well-known in the lo­cal bell­ring­ing com­mu­nity, hold­ing the po­si­tion of tower cap­tain at All Saints Church in Bin­field, as well as ring­ing in var­i­ous churches around Wok­ing­ham.

Speak­ing at his in­quest as Read­ing Town Hall on Thurs­day, Novem­ber 2, his widow Jane told the coroner how the cou­ple had been to the gar­den cen­tre the pre­vi­ous day with their two young grand­chil­dren. Dur­ing their visit, Mr Creasy bought some wasp pow­der to tackle a large nest which had de­vel­oped on the back of his house.

Mrs Creasy said: “As it was close to the door, we were wor­ried about the chil­dren.”

She de­scribed the cou­ple hav­ing sup­per at around 7pm, and shortly af­ter­wards she went up­stairs to use the com­puter to send an email to her friend. At around 9.15pm, she heard her hus­band come in­side and call out to her: “I’ve been stung and I don’t feel well.”

“Those were his last words,” Mrs Creasy said, be­fore de­scrib­ing how her hus­band then col­lapsed into a chair and fell un­con­scious.

Dis­cov­er­ing that her hus­band wasn’t breath­ing and had a very weak pulse, Mrs Creasy called the emer­gency ser­vices, who ar­rived within 10 min­utes.

A crew from Royal Berk­shire Fire and Res­cue Ser­vice were first on the scene, and Mr Creasy was moved from the chair to the floor where he was put into the re­cov­ery po­si­tion.

Once South Cen­tral Am­bu­lance Ser­vice Paramedics ar­rived a short time later, Mr Creasy had started breath­ing again but still had a very weak pulse.

Lead para­medic Chloe Small de­scribed Mr Creasy’s un­usual pre­sen­ta­tion as ‘noth­ing I have seen in my 16 years as a para­medic’, as Mr Creasy’s breath­ing was fairly reg­u­lar but his heart had stopped.

Dur­ing the ini­tial emer­gency treat­ment, some con­fu­sion arose over when the wasp st­ing took place, with Ms Small es­ti­mat­ing that it had hap­pened ‘around six hours’ prior to Mr Creasy’s col­lapse. The paramedics en­rolled him onto a car­diac ar­rest trial, to de­ter­mine whether the use of adren­a­line would im­prove his con­di­tion. He was treated with high-flow oxy­gen and in­tra­venous flu­ids, and given CPR, be­fore be­ing trans­ferred to the Royal Berk­shire Hos­pi­tal in Read­ing.

Upon ar­rival, Mr Creasy suf­fered a fur­ther car­diac ar­rest and an elec­tro­car­dio­gram (ECG) re­vealed that although there was elec­tri­cal ac­tiv­ity in his heart, it was not gen­er­at­ing a pulse. He was trans­ferred to In­ten­sive Care, where doc­tors re­alised the wasp st­ing had oc­curred a lot more re­cently, and he was put on a course of med­i­ca­tion to treat the al­ler­gic re­ac­tion.

Sadly, Mr Creasy’s shock wors­ened and he suf­fered mul­ti­ple or­gan fail­ure and in­ter­nal bleed­ing, and died at 11.45am on July 11.

The as­sis­tant coroner for Berk­shire, Ali­son McCormick read a state­ment by Pro­fes­sor Charles Deakin, As­sis­tant Med­i­cal Di­rec­tor for South Cen­tral Am­bu­lance Ser­vice, who in­ves­ti­gated whether the ini­tial use of adren­a­line in Mr Creasy’s treat­ment could have al­tered the out­come.

In a state­ment he said: “Although adren­a­line is not ad­vised for pa­tients who have re­cently suf­fered an al­ler­gic re­ac­tion, in this case it was en­tirely ap­pro­pri­ate as Mr Creasy was in a state of car­diac ar­rest. I do not be­lieve that any change in his treat­ment would have al­tered the out­come.”

A tox­i­col­ogy re­port re­vealed a small amount of hon­ey­bee venom in Mr Creasy’s sys­tem, and a large amount of wasp venom, con­sis­tent with ana­phy­lac­tic shock.

A post-mortem re­vealed Mr Creasy had sus­tained stings to his chest, feet and groin area, de­spite be­ing fully-clothed when tack­ling the wasp nest, lead­ing the coroner to sug­gest that the wasps may have pen­e­trated his cloth­ing or flown into his trouser legs.

Ms McCormick said: “Had Mr Creasy known he was so ter­ri­bly al­ler­gic, he wouldn’t have at­tempted to treat the wasps nest.”

Speak­ing im­me­di­ately after the in­quest, Mrs Creasy, who was sup­ported by her daugh­ters Ann and Lynn, and her brother Jeff Broad, said: “David was a won­der­ful man, a bril­liant hus­band, fa­ther and grand­fa­ther, who is ter­ri­bly missed. "He used to work for the Met Of­fice be­fore they re­lo­cated, and he en­joyed bell-ring­ing in the lo­cal area, he was the tower cap­tain in Bin­field.

Two peals were held for him, a quar­ter peal at All Saints in Bin­field, and a full peal at St Paul's.

“I want to pay trib­ute to the emer­gency ser­vices, they were all fan­tas­tic to David and my­self.”

The coroner recorded a cause of death as ana­phy­lac­tic shock caused by wasp or bee venom, and a ver­dict of mis­ad­ven­ture.

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