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A DISTRAUGHT widow missed saying her final goodbye to her dying husband as she was receiving surgery on a broken hip she suffered after being dealt the crushing news her partner wasn’t going to survive.
Joan Gronow was devastated when her husband Brian died just weeks before their Golden Wedding Anniversary after what should have been a routine operation to remove his gall bladder, an inquest heard today/yesterday (WED).
The 72-year-old, from Coventry, Warks, died of blood poisoning and septicaemia after his bowel was accidentally cut during key hole surgery.
He died in April this year, just weeks before he was due to travel to America with his wife Joan, 69, to celebrate their anniversary.
His devastated wife was also hospitalised when she collapsed with shock and broke her hip shortly after doctors told her that her husband’s condition had deteriorated.
The life-long sweethearts had been side by side in hospital, but when Mrs Gronow returned from emergency surgery she was heartbroken to be informed that her husband had died.
He was buried the day before they were due to fly to Ibiza on their dream holiday.
The retired painter and decorator had an operation to remove a gall stone that had been causing him some discomfort in March this year.
Surgeons decided to remove his gall bladder just two and a half weeks later in order to prevent any further complications.
An inquest at Coventry Magistrates court heard that Mr Gronow had undergone surgery for bowel cancer 11 years before, but had made a full recovery.
However, a six-inch scar from his previous operation put him at higher risk of developing complications from the laparoscopic or keyhole procedure to remove his gall bladder.
The court heard how a trainee surgeon had initially made two incisions just above Mr Gronow ’s bellybutton, but had called in a senior surgeon to help after he had trouble gaining access to the patient’s gall bladder.
It was suggested that this could have led to small cuts being caused to Mr Gronow’s bowel, which may have later leaked.
Speaking at the inquest, Mr Gronow ’s widow, Joan, said he was in good health prior to his operations.
She said: “He was in quite good health for his age, he always ate healthy, always kept his weight at a certain level and always looked after himself.
Mrs Gronow, who attended the inquest on crutches, added: “He had no major problems or ailments after his cancer operation, he had fully recovered from that.”