A catering manager died four weeks after mysteriously developing pancreatitis, an inquest heard.
Linda Dicken, of Hazel Grove, Clayton-le-Moors, started feeling unwell over Christmas and became sick on New Year’s Eve.
The mother-of-three was taken to Royal Blackburn Hospital and later diagnosed with pancreatitis, Blackburn Coroner’s Court heard.
Mrs Dicken, 51, underwent surgery to remove dead tissue affecting her organs.
The surgery was successful but she did not recover and passed away on January 31.
Consultant histopathologist Dr Richard Prescott told the inquest Mrs Dicken died of multi-organ failure due to acute pancreatitis but said he was at a loss to explain how and why she got the condition.
The hearing was told how Mrs Dicken was a ‘young and fit’ woman who took regular exercise and did not smoke.
Dr Prescott said: “I’m disappointed that we can’t find the cause of the pancreatitis.
“I would like to know myself but there’s nothing I can find. The most common reasons are either a lot of alcohol or gall stones.
“She didn’t drink a lot of alcohol and I didn’t find any gall stones.
“I really don’t know how this was developed.
“There’s no magic tablet that you can give. If it is very severe pancreatitis the modern approach is to cut out the necrosis to get rid of the dead tissue and reduce the toxemia.”
Dr Prescott told the inquest she was diagnosed with pancreatitis quickly and her surgery was necessary and successful.
However, he said only 50 per cent of people diagnosed with the condition survive.
After the hearing Linda’s partner John Powell paid tribute to her.
He said:?“Linda was a fun loving person, full of energy and always left a smile with people that she met. She was a wonderful mother and partner and will be sadly missed by all.”
Assistant deputy coroner Derek Baker said it was a ‘sad and tragic case’.
Recording a narrative verdict he said: “She died on January 31 at Royal Blackburn Hospital following her necessary surgery for acute pancreatitis.”
Mrs Dicken worked as a catering manager at various companies including Tesco and Boundary Mill Stores and was also a member at All Saints Church. She leaves partner John Powell, children Steven, Hilary and Lindsay Dicken, grandchild Faye Dicken and her brother Michael Mckenzie.