A cancer patient who had successful brain surgery jumped through a hospital window and plunged 50ft to his death – after steroid drugs made him believe he was JESUS, an inquest heard.
Tragic Joseph Tauya, 55, smashed his way through a closed window in the neurological ward at the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham on March 1 last year.
An inquest heard Mr Tauya told nurses he was “Jesus” moments before he hurled himself to his death.
The day before, the devoted father-of-three had undergone an operation to remove a malignant tumour on his brain.
The op was a success, but hours later Mr Tauya suffered from euphoric and paranoid episodes caused by the strong steroid dexamethasone (corr) he took to reduce swelling on the brain.
One of the side effects of the drug is that it can cause patients to suffer disturbing and deluded thoughts.
Nurse Rowena Pulk told the hearing how Mr Tauya, originally from Zimbabwe, had been pacing up and down the ward and had tried to leave.
She said: “He was banging on the door and shouting ‘Jesus is in me, I am the saviour’.”
The inquest heard that at 1.30pm Mr Tauya leapt on to the window ledge in the ward and smashed the glass.
A doctor and around 20 people on the ward came to try to pull Mr Tauya away from danger.
Ms Pulk said: “I remember my arms starting to hurt and losing grip.
“I could see his hands trying to take my hands away. He was trying to get away from us.”
Coroner Miss Mairin Casey said: “I am already of the opinion from the independent police investigation that there was nothing more they could have done to prevent what happened.”
A pathologist recorded the cause of death as multiple injuries.
Mr Tauya, of Braunstone, Leicester, had been married to his wife Moira for more than 18 years and also left three children, aged 3, 12 and 17.
The inquest continues.
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