Mexico dive tragedy man 'killed by heart attack'

A MAN who died while scuba diving in Mexico suffered a heart attack just hours before the dive—though he did not realise it at the time, a pathologist has said.

Jeremy Bain (47), of Rencliffe Avenue, Moorgate, suffered a second, fatal attack while 17 metres underwater off the coast of Tulum, Quintana Roo state, where he was holidaying with partner Zena Abdul-Zeini and her daughter last August.

He was taken back to shore with an oxygen mask on his face after he surfaced quickly, complaining of feeling sick, but paramedics pronounced him dead minutes after he reached land.

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At an inquest on Wednesday, pathologist Dr Simon Suvara disagreed with Mexican postmortem examiners who concluded that Mr Bain had died from decompression sickness.

Dr Suvara described how Mr Bain’s blood vessels had narrowed to as little as one fifth of their normal diameter as the result of a poor diet and heavy smoking.

He also pointed out damage and scarring in Mr Bain’s heart muscles, which suggested that he had suffered several minor heart attacks both years and hours before his death.

Pc Lee Woodwards, a police diving expert, agreed that the risk of decompression sickness — commonly known as “the bends” — was negligible.

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Ms Abdul-Zeini told the Rotherham Coroner, Ms Nicola Mundy, that her partner of four months had complained of feeling “flushed and a bit giddy” at breakfast, just hours before heading out to sea.

She also suggested that Mr Bain had been trying to change his unhealthy ways in the weeks before his death.

“He was a heavy smoker and he would drink quite a lot as well, but prior to the holiday he had lost about four inches off his waist.”

Ms Mundy delivered a verdict of death by natural causes, resulting from a heart attack brought on by years of unhealthy living.

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She said: “He was a heavy smoker and had been for many years, placing him at risk of heart disease.

“There was a very significant narrowing of his arteries, so there was a high risk of death at any time. It is my view that Mr Bain passed away because of an underlying heart condition.”

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