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Forensic toxicologist reveals symptoms mushroom poisoning victims could have had before tragic death

Forensic toxicologist reveals symptoms mushroom poisoning victims could have had before tragic death

Forensic toxicologist Dr Michael Robertson said the first phase the unfortunate lunch guests would have faced is 'debilitating'.

A Forensic toxicologist has revealed the devastating symptoms of death cap mushroom poisoning after three people - who are suspected of consuming the substance - died.

Back in July, Erin Patterson, 48, cooked a beef wellington lunch at her home in Leongatha, Victoria, Australia, for her ex-husband’s relatives.

Peterson’s lunch guests included parents-in-law Gail and Don Patterson, both 70, and Gail’s sister, Heather Wilkinson, 66. All of them died within a few days of consuming the meal, meanwhile Heather’s husband Ian, 68, survived after spending several days on life support while in a coma in hospital.

The case has gripped the world as investigations into the deaths are still being carried out by police in Australia. Ms Patterson has denied any wrongdoing and said she did not know the mushrooms in her dish were poisonous.

As the search for answers continues, forensic toxicologist, Dr Michael Robertson, has revealed the horrific symptoms he believes the guests may have suffered after consuming the deadly fungi.

People tend to start feeling unwell several hours after eating the mushrooms, but will eventually begin to feel better again, but this is actually the body slowly shutting down.

Erin Patterson denied any wrongdoing.
Nine News

In an episode of Channel Nine’s Under Investigation titled ‘The Last Lunch’, he said: “We’ve heard about the violent vomiting and diarrhoea and that first phase can be quite debilitating in itself.

“It’s one of those toxins that gets into your system.

“It gets absorbed into the bloodstream, it then gets transported to the liver and absorbed. The body doesn’t break this toxin down.

“We’ve got to get rid of it usually in the urine but also in the bile, and the bile duct drops bile back into the intestines.“It’s triggering basically the death of the liver cells."

Dr Robertson explained that the Ms Patterson’s guests may have gone into comas before they died.

“It would’ve been horrible if they remained conscious,” he added.

“They may have gone into a coma, if they remained conscious, certainly that first day would’ve been absolutely horrific.”

In a written statement to police, obtained exclusively by ABC News, Ms Patterson - who has maintained her innocence - gave a detailed account of what happened in the run-up to and aftermath of the meal, including an accusation made by her estranged husband, Simon Patterson.

Don and Gail Patterson sadly died earlier this month.
Family handout

The account began: "I am now wanting to clear up the record because I have become extremely stressed and overwhelmed by the deaths of my loved ones.

"I am hoping this statement might help in some way. I believe if people understood the background more, they would not be so quick to rush to judgement.

"I am now devastated to think that these mushrooms may have contributed to the illness suffered by my loved ones. I really want to repeat that I had absolutely no reason to hurt these people whom I loved."

Featured Image Credit: Channel Nine

Topics: Australia, Erin Patterson, Health, News, TV and Film, Food And Drink