Man died from severe case of salmonella after eating duck eggs from country show, inquest hears

·3-min read
Niptoon Tavakoli died from multi-organ failure caused by salmonella, an inquest heard. (PA)
Niptoon Tavakoli died from multi-organ failure caused by salmonella, an inquest heard. (PA)

A man died from one of the most serious cases of salmonella a doctor had ever seen after eating four duck eggs he bought at a country show, an inquest has heard.

Niptoon Tavakoli, 65, from Lindholme, near Doncaster, died in hospital two months after falling ill in June 2019.

His wife, Cheryl, told Doncaster Coroner’s Court on Monday that the couple bought six eggs from a stall at Messingham Show in North Lincolnshire during a family day out.

Mrs Tavakoli, 63, said her husband ate two of the eggs for his tea the day after.

“He fried them really well,” she said. “He didn’t like eggs too runny.”

She said her husband had two more eggs two days later.

He cooked them the same way, she told the inquest.

On the Friday morning, Mrs Tavakoli said she woke to find her husband had been ill in the night with diarrhoea and vomiting.

Niptoon Tavakoli and his wife Cheryl Tavakoli, who gave evidence at the inquest into his death. (PA)
Niptoon Tavakoli and his wife Cheryl Tavakoli, who gave evidence at the inquest into his death. (PA)

She said she reluctantly took a trip to Essex due to a close family bereavement and, while she was away, her husband told her he had called for an ambulance.

Mrs Tavakoli said he told her paramedics gave him advice but did not take him to hospital.

She said she returned home the next day but her husband was still very unwell.

On the Monday morning – more than a week after the visit to the show – Mrs Tavakoli called 999 again fearing her husband may have developed sepsis, she told the inquest.

She said he had mottling on his body and his lips and his nails had turned blue.

The same paramedics attended and took him to Doncaster Royal Infirmary but Mrs Tavakoli said she was concerned about the crew’s attitude and that they did not travel under blue lights.

“They seemed quite rude to my husband – treated him like he was a fussy old man who just had D&V (diarrhoea and vomit),” she said.

“But I was worried it was more serious. He was in a lot of pain.”

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Mrs Tavakoli said there was further waiting in the emergency department and, by this time, her husband’s lips and nails had turned black.

She said he was eventually taken in for treatment after pleading with nurses.

Intensive care specialist Dr Jon Maskill said Mr Tavakoli was seriously ill by the time he was admitted.

He said: “This severity of salmonella, in my experience, is unusual. It’s not something you see a lot of.

“I’ve been doing intensive care for 27 years. He’s only the second person I’ve come across with this degree of salmonella.”

Dr Maskill said antibiotics were used to treat the illness but it was clear it was still in parts of Mr Tavakoli’s body despite the medication.

Retired retail manager Niptoon Tavakoli died from salmonella after eating four duck eggs he bought at a country show. (PA)
Retired retail manager Niptoon Tavakoli died from salmonella after eating four duck eggs he bought at a country show. (PA)

He said this happens in some severe cases and surgery is sometimes attempted to remove body parts harbouring the infection.

But the consultant said there was no prospect of Mr Tavakoli surviving surgery and he died from multi-organ failure caused by salmonella on 12 August 2019.

Mrs Tavakoli explained how, when she realised the duck eggs might be responsible, she took the remaining two to hospital for analysis and then scrubbed her home, throwing away the cooking implements.

She said she “felt like they were ticking time bombs in my house”.

Mrs Tavakoli said her husband came to the UK from Iran when he was 19 and trained as a civil engineer but worked in retail management and catering before retiring three years ago.

She said: “I’d never seen him so fit as he was. He was happy.”

She added: “He was enjoying life and waiting for me to join him in his retirement. Lots of plans”.

The inquest is expected to last for five days.

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