A 54-YEAR-OLD man who went missing last May and whose body was found in woods days later died of natural causes, a Bradford coroner has ruled.

James Huby had a history of mental health problems and had been admitted to Bradford Royal Infirmary days before his death after being found wandering outside his home in Cottingley Road, Sandy Lane.

A large police operation was launched after he was reported missing again on May 29, 2018.

But the inquest at Bradford Coroner's Court heard that Mr Huby's drinking and a poor recent diet because his wife had gone into hospital led him to develop ketoacidosis which led to the acidification of his blood. It affected his metabolism and led to him entering a confused state and collapsing.

His body was found face down in Cottingley Beck about 300 metres from his home.

Mary Burke, assistant coroner, recorded the cause of death as ketoacidosis and told the hearing: "There is no evidence to suggest James's mental health or the way he has been treated has contributed to his death.

"He has died as a result of natural causes."

Ketoacidosis is the result of an excess of ketones in the blood which are produced when the body converts stored fats into an energy source rather than using the usual carbohydrates if these are in short supply.

The coroner's court heard that Mr Huby's wife had gone into hospital and he had been struggling to feed himself because of dental problems and had lost weight.

Dr Richard Knights, who examined Mr Huby's body, said there was no evidence that he had drowned. A toxicological test of his blood found a high level of ketones. The reading was 2,430 with a level of 2,500 or more being significant in contributing towards death.

Dr Knights said that diabetes and alcohol consumption are major contributing factors towards ketoacidosis and the coroner heard that Mr Huby was not a diabetic but he had drunk alcohol for a lot of his adult life.

In her summary Mrs Burke said Mr Huby had a long history of suffering psychological symptoms with numerous hospital admissions since 1990.

He was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and depression and in the months before his death found it very difficult to cope on his own in a social setting after his wife was admitted to hospital with her own health problems.

He was admitted to BRI by ambulance on May 25 after he was found in a confused state outside his home by a member of the public.

On the 26th doctors undertook a mental health act assessment of him and concluded that they had no reason to detain him and there was no immediate risk he would hurt himself.

He was visited at home by the home-based treatment team on the 28th but the next day he was found to be missing by a nurse and the alarm was raised.

Police instigated a search but he was not found until June 4 in the wooded area with no public access.

A statement from Mr Huby's family read by Mrs Burke said that he had been "crushed" when his mother died in 2017, having also been badly affected by the death of his father.