Coroner records suicide verdict: Pike Inquest — (Manx Radio – Isle of Man)

SSRI Ed note: Man on antidepressants suffers agitation, anxiety, lapses into depression, one day hangs himself. Everyone shocked because he wasn't suicidal.

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Manx Radio

04/06/2008 07:41:51  

Tribute has been paid to a 72 year-old Braddan man who committed suicide.

Alan Pike, of Spinney Close, Saddlestone was discovered hanging in his home by his wife on April 29.

A post mortem confirmed death was due to asphyxia as a result of hanging.

The inquest was told Mr Pike had been receiving medication for depression.

Coroner Michael Moyle knew Mr Pike and said his death had come as a complete shock and surprise.

The court heard Mrs Pike had returned home from an art class and discovered her husband hanging by a ligature from the banister.

She cut the ligature and called an ambulance.

The shock led to Mrs Pike being admitted to hospital and she suffered a heart attack.

Dr David Walker attended the scene at 1pm and estimated death had occurred within the previous three hours.

Dr Christopher Jagus, a consultant in old age psychiatry, said Mr Pike had fluctuating depressive symptoms, sometimes coping very well but with odd lapses.

There were occasions, he said, when alterations were made to his treatment and there was one time when he was admitted to hospital.

The inquest was told Mr Pike had become agitated in the weeks prior to his death.

He had engaged a company to carry out work on the family home and that was causing him some concern, as was noise generally.

However, while he was generally anxious over small things, friends said he had not shown any suicidal tendencies in recent times and his mood had remained relatively stable.

After his wife became concerned about what was described as irritable behaviour, restfulness and tearfulness, Mr Pike saw a consultant but, again, there was no suicide intent.

He was due to have a follow-up appointment the day after he died.

In extending his deepest sympathy to Mr Pike’s family and friends, Mr Moyle said he was completely and utterly shocked he had taken his own life and, while he had not been his usual ebullient self in recent months, he felt there was no way he would intend his wife to discover him as she did.

Mr Pike was described as a popular man with lots of interests, who struggled to articulate his problems and some days was very chatty and on others was down.

He didn’t want to be put into care with people who were suffering mental illness other than depression.

Speaking to a friend on the day he died, Mr Pike gave no indication he was considering suicide and had recently talked of booking a holiday.

A verdict of suicide was recorded.

(Picture: Douglas courthouse, where the inquest was held).