Doctors unable to save Yorkshire man who caught severe salmonella from duck eggs

A man from Doncaster died from one of the worst cases of salmonella a hospital consultant has seen after eating four duck eggs he bought at a country show, an inquest was told.

The jury inquest heard Niptoon Tavakoli, 65, died in hospital two months after he fell ill in June 2019.

His wife, Cheryl, told Doncaster Coroner’s Court the pair bought six eggs from a stall at Messingham Show, in North Lincolnshire, during a family day out on Sunday, June 2.

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Mrs Tavakoli, 63, said her husband fried two of the eggs “really well” and ate them with toast the following day.

Niptoom TavakoliNiptoom Tavakoli
Niptoom Tavakoli

Two days later he ate another two fried eggs and said he “really enjoyed” them, she added.

On the Friday morning, she realised he had been ill in the night with diarrhoea and vomiting.

He called for an ambulance, while he was was visiting family in Essex, and the paramedics gave him advice, but did not take him to hospital.

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On the Monday morning – more than a week after the visit to the show – Mrs Tavakoli called 999 again as she was very concerned about her husband, fearing he may have developed sepsis, she told the hearing.

Niptoon and Cherry TavakoliNiptoon and Cherry Tavakoli
Niptoon and Cherry Tavakoli

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.

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Intensive care specialist Dr Jon Maskill said Mr Tavakoli was seriously ill when he was admitted.

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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.

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

The consultant said there was no prospect of Mr Tavakoli surviving, even with surgery, and he died from multi-organ failure caused by salmonella on August 12 in 2019.

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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.