A talented rugby player and intelligent student took his own life after suffering concussion during a match and suffering debilitating symptoms, an inquest has found.
Cameron Milton, 18, from Edgworth, near Darwen, was found dead in his room on the morning of 29 March.
Cameron Suffered a Concussion in August 2021
The teen, who attended Bolton School and played for Bolton Rugby Club, was discovered by his mum Jo Milton when she went to wake him up for school.
She desperately tried to resuscitate her son but when paramedics arrived, she said, "He's gone, I know he's gone." Toxicology tests revealed he had died from poisoning. A "clearly poisonous" plant material was found in Cameron's room and behind his bunk beds.
An inquest held last week at Accrington Town Hall heard that Cameron, the youngest of three brothers, had been worrying about symptoms he had been experiencing since suffering a concussion during a rugby match in August 2021.
Cameron began to experience dizziness, tremors, loss of balance and heart palpitations. Despite extensive tests and a number of attendances at A&E, doctors were unable to find anything wrong with Cameron and advised against a brain CT scan because of the risk of exposure to radiation at such a young age.
His parents had planned to pay for the scan privately, but Cameron told them he didn't want them to spend their money.
Cameron Expressed Fears of Dying
The teenager's Friends from school reported that Cameron had voiced fears that he was dying. The sixth-form student was getting high grades in classics, PE and geography but his ongoing medical symptoms meant he had missed a number of lessons.
Mrs Milton, who works at Rossendale School, said the Covid lockdown had "a massive impact" on him. Living in Edgworth meant he was particularly isolated given its rural location between Darwen and Bolton.
Mrs Milton revealed that Cameron would regularly test his heart rate and blood pressure, which both occasionally spiked to high readings, including a heart rate of 180 beats per minute.
"One day in early January he came to me upset and crying. He couldn't speak for half an hour," she said in a statement. "He said he'd had a full body tremor. It lasted for two minutes. The next day he went to school and had more tremors. That's when he started struggling to get to school."
ECG tests and blood tests found nothing of concern but Cameron continued to believe he had a heart condition. He was "scared" he would die and even recorded voice notes on Snapchat almost as if "in the event of his unexpected death."
On the night of 28 March, Cameron went to bed after saying "love you" to his mum as normal. At 7am the next morning, Mrs Milton found her youngest son dead in his bed.
An examination of Cameron's phone indicated he had deleted his search history. Cameron's ex-girlfriend gave a statement to police in which she referred to him having voiced intentions to kill himself.