DOCTORS have been told to review the way they prescribe drugs after a man was found dead, having taken dangerous medication.

Nathan Cooke, 36, of Westminster Lane, Newport, was found dead by his mother, an inquest into his death heard.

He had been prescribed a number of medications for his mental health and previous drug addiction issues, which included methadone and clomipramine, an antidepressant known to cause cardiac arrhythmia, convulsions and central nervous system depression when excessive doses are taken.

Isle of Wight Coroner's Court heard how good practice dictates that when a patient is on clomipramine, they should be monitored for abnormal heart rhythms.

In Mr Cooke's case, he was found to have an abnormal reading in October 2017, which could have been caused by the methadone and clomipromine. He was warned of the increased risk of potential heart arrhythmia and death.

While taking the methadone and clomipramine, Mr Cooke also took illicit medication that had not been prescribed to him, the inquest heard.

He was offered a number of follow up appointments to monitor his heart rhythm, but failed to attend or declined to have the test done when he did attend appointments, the inquest heard.

A drugs worker who attended the coroner's court acknowledged how important it was to convey to patients that they needed to have the cardiac tests for their own safety.

The inquest heard how it was possible to decline further prescriptions in order to compel a patient to undergo the tests, but this could be dangerous as it may lead to a sudden stop in their medication.

Caroline Sumeray, the coroner, raised concerns that there was a risk of future deaths like that of Mr Cooke if a patient is prescribed medication which could be dangerous and is not monitored regularly.

The coroner suggested a more appropriate way to manage and control that risk would be for the medical practice to write to the patient, inviting them to attend a review, and inform them that if they failed to attend by a specific date, their medication would be reduced and eventually stopped.

The inquest heard how Mr Cooke died of cardio-respiratory failure, caused by central nervous system depression, as a result of a methadone and clomipramine overdose.

He died in February last year and an inquest took place in April.

The coroner concluded it was a drug-related death.

A spokesperson for the Isle of Wight NHS Clinical Commissioning Group said: "We would like to offer our sincere condolences to Nathan’s family.

“We can confirm that we have received a report from the coroner which we will be responding to.

"We are committed to taking prompt action to ‘ensure learning’ from all inquests for primary care services across the Island.”

Don't forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.