“She was my sister. I loved her”, said Carrie-Anne Scott, remembering her older sibling.
Michelle Scott died aged 40 in March this year following complications from elective hernia surgery.
An inquest into her death was held at Centenary House in Worthing yesterday.
“She led a very varied life and quite a wild life at times”, Carrie-Anne told the inquest.
Michelle, who lived Ockley Court, Bognor Regis, died in intensive care on March 6 at St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester.
She had received rehabilitative treatment for alcohol addiction in the past and also suffered from mental health issues.
“She used alcohol to ease the burden that she needed to carry”, said Carrie-Anne.
While they did not always get on, Carrie-Anne said she and her sister always kept up with how each was getting on, often through their mother or grandmother.
“She loved life I think, and she was a good person”, she said.
After receiving emergency hernia treatment, Michelle had been scheduled for an elective operation to repair the hernia in September 2014, However this was postponed until January 2015 after Michelle developed MRSA.
Michelle was discharged three days after her surgery, which doctors believed went well.
Speaking of the decision to repair the hernia, which is an elective procedure, in January 2015, consultant surgeon William Hawkins, who treated Michelle, said: “I do not have any doubt that it was an appropriate operation”.
Mr Hawkins said there was a risk of the hernia twisting, which would require emergency surgery.
“She was always aware of her ill health and the risks that would put on her surgery”, he added.
Michelle was taken into surgery after complaining of abdominal pain on March 4, and doctors found that part of her bowel had died and had to be removed. While they were able to repair the bowel in another surgery the next day, Michelle died at 8.45pm on March 6.
The post-mortem examination confirmed that she died of multiple organ failure due to a bowel infarction - where blood supply to the bowel is restricted, complicated by obesity, diabetes, cardiomegaly - abnormal enlargement of the heart - and liver cirrhosis.
West Sussex coroner Penelope Schofield returned a conclusion that Michelle died from the complications of a necessary medical intervention.