Teenager died after heart failure days before her 18th birthday

Megan Brooks.
Megan Brooks.

A teenager who died suddenly just days before her 18th birthday was likely suffering from a genetic disorder.

Megan Brooks collapsed while working at Eastbourne Rugby Club last year and an inquest into her death held today (Friday) found that she had been suffering from a heart condition since an early age – visiting a specialist hospital in London for check ups.

Coroner Alan Craze heard evidence from Megan’s GP and doctors who had been involved with her monitoring and was told that she may have suffered from a disorder called Noonan Syndrome.

Tests failed to establish whether or not Megan did have Noonan, and the fact that neither or her parents had been found to have it make it seem unlikely, but the experts said it was possible she suffered from something in the same spectrum.

Recording a verdict of death by natural causes, Mr Craze noted the reason for death as heart failure – or more specifically problems with the left ventricle.

He said he saw very few cases of such a sudden death each year – as few as two or three, and expressed his heartfelt condolences to Megan’s parents Fraser and Jane.

Mrs Brooks said that more tests were now available for conditions similar to Megan’s and urged the powers that be to make sure anyone at risk was afforded the opportunity to be screened and tested.

A huge fan of boyband Westlife, Megan was described by her mum as “special to everybody” and the sort of person who would “do anything for anyone”.

Her parents set up a charity in her memory, You Raise Me Up, which helps contribute to the funeral costs of young people who die unexpectedly and offer emotional support for the family left behind.