A MAN who struggled to overcome his alcohol dependency discharged himself from hospital days before he died of a drug overdose.

Lee Denton, of Hamilton Road, Reading, was in the middle of a rehabilitation programme at Prospect Park Hospital when he left against the advice of doctors.

The 43-year-old, who lived alone at Charfield Court, was found to have taken a fatal combination of painkillers and he died at his home on June 29, nine days after he left hospital.

Police forced entry to his home following a concern for his welfare and he was found unresponsive with a mug by his side, containing a plethora of drugs.

A toxicology report found he had ingested lethal doses of codeine, more than five times above the amount attributed to drug-related deaths.

Peter Beford, senior coroner for Berkshire, explained he had also taken paracetamol and anti-depressant medication in larger than recommended doses, but he had not been drinking.

He added: “We know he was on anti-depressant medication, but there is no evidence whatsoever that he was in any way suicidal.

“There was no note to suggest he was contemplating self-harm and yet he has taken this large volume of drugs, none of which were prescribed.

“Individually these doses are lethal, but I have to meet a very high standard of proof to be certain he intended to take his own life.”

The coroner recorded a verdict of drug-related death at the inquest at Reading Town Hall on Wednesday.

Mr Denton regularly suffered from alcohol-related seizures and was found lying in the road by paramedics in December 2016.

He had been seeing the IRiS support team, but feared he would relapse if he was forced to stop drinking entirely.

Doctors continued to advise him that his medication would not work if he kept drinking and he became agitated with doctors at Prospect Park before he left.

Neighbours could hear his television playing overnight and when emergency services attended there was no opportunity to save his life.