Man died hours before partner gave birth to their daughter

A heavily pregnant woman tried to wake up her 40-year-old partner before going to hospital to give birth - only to find he had died after doctors misread an abnormal heart scan, an inquest has been told.

Rebecca Moss, from Stretford, Greater Manchester, said "wake up, it's baby day" to Thomas Gibson as she attempted to perform emergency first aid, before an ambulance arrived and he was pronounced dead, Stockport Coroner's Court heard.

Hours later, Ms Moss gave birth to their daughter Harper.

She told the inquest into his death that she woke up around 5.15am on 7 June last year, the date of her elective Caesarean section, and went downstairs.

Ms Moss said her partner was asleep on the couch. "I was trying to cheer him up and was saying 'wake up, it's baby day', she told the hearing.

"Tom didn't respond, so I went over to the couch to give him a kiss. He was lying in his usual sleeping position. When I touched him, he was cold and stiff. He wouldn't wake up.

"I called 999 immediately. They asked me to pull Tom on to the floor and perform chest compressions. I started chest compressions until the ambulance arrived."

She also said the "shock, trauma and physical exertion" was "overwhelming" at 39 weeks pregnant as she had to pull him off the couch and carry out chest compressions on him.

The inquest also heard a hospital doctor said he had misinterpreted an electrocardiogram (ECG) scan carried out 11 days earlier, when he had gone to A&E with a severe stomach bug.

Mr Gibson was physically fit but was suffering from cramps and diarrhoea for around three weeks before his death, the hearing was told.

He attended A&E at Wythenshawe Hospital on 27 May last year and was seen by Dr Oliver Handley.

The medic found his ECG trace showed signs of an abnormality and referred it for a second opinion to a more senior figure there, Dr Thomas Bull.

Dr Bull, the medical registrar, said the ECG scan was likely to be an abnormality which he described as an intraventricular block, that is "not an uncommon finding" and not clinically "significant" without other heart-related symptoms.

"I advised if there's no heart symptoms generally then that would not require any investigation at this time," Dr Bull said.

Analysis later found the ECG identified a complete heart block, also known as a third-degree heart block, the most serious kind, which can lead to sudden cardiac death, according to lawyers for the family.

Dr Bull added: "I can see now, in retrospect and in hindsight, there is abnormalities over and above those I could see present."

Mr Gibson, who worked in a timber yard, was discharged from hospital after no immediate treatment was thought to be needed.

He was asked to return in a week if his severe stomach illness had not got better.

But he was found dead 11 days later from sudden cardiac death, a pathologist concluded.

Lawyers for his relatives said Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust has made a full admission of liability that it provided negligent medical care to him in the days before his death.

The inquest continues.