MEDICAL chiefs are being asked to investigate the side effects of a blood pressure drug after a father of two took his own life.

Thomas Rayner, 50, a fire station technician at Hinkley Point nuclear power station for 28 years, repeatedly complained of feeling unwell after being prescribed Atenloll to treat his high blood pressure.

At an inquest hearing in Taunton on Tuesday Mr Rayner's wife of 27 years, Jean, said the drug appeared to affect him, and he was agitated and lost confidence in his ability at work.

Mrs Rayner said her husband was worried about taking the tablets because they made him feel unwell and he kept saying "I'm scared."

The couple visited a doctor who said it was unlikely the tablets made him feel ill, but as a result of the consultation Mr Rayner was signed off work for three weeks with fatigue.

Just days later he was found dead, hanging from a belt tied to a drainpipe at the rear of the family home in Wembdon Rise, Wembdon, Bridgwater, on August 7.

The inquest was told no suicide note was found and Mr Rayner did not have a history of depression.

West Somerset coroner Michael Rose said: "It would be quite wrong for me to say the tablets led to his death, but I will report it to the committee that looks into these matters."

Details of the case will be passed to the NHS drugs investigation committee.

Verdict: Mr Rayner took his own life while the balance of his mind was disturbed.