A SOUTHAMPTON student was found dead hanging just days before he was due to sit his final exams, an inquest heard.

Kieran Patel, a medical student at the University of Southampton, was discovered in his en suite bathroom by Hampshire police.

The hearing was told that he had a history of depression and was with alcohol and paracetamol in his system, an inquest heard.

Senior Hampshire Coroner Grahame Short, senior coroner, said Mr Patel had left a note.

He said: "He clearly was a sensitive person and was aware of the consequences. It does describe the struggles he has had over the years. He wanted to end his life which he described in some detail."

He added: "It is a terrible waste of a life."

The 27-year-old was found dead after Hampshire police were called his home in Portswood Road by flatmate Tristan Millington on January 7.

He said: "He said to me he had mild depression just after we started living together and had gone to see his doctor about it.

"He seemed to be working hard and was clearly not okay; he would spend long periods of time in his room away working during the exam season. "He was going for midnight drives to clear his head and we would try to get him to take a break."

A letter from Olivia Maxwell, Kieran's girlfriend, which was read to the inquest, said: "I have known him for three years. He appeared very stressed and said before he had suicidal thoughts."

She added: "He was very popular, had a lot of friends and he seemed to get on well with his family. We would speak about the future and living together."

Mr Short recorded a conclusion that Mr Patel took his own life.

After the inquest Kieran's family released a statement.

It said: "Kieran was a much-loved son, brother and friend. We are deeply saddened that he is no longer with us and he will never be forgotten. He was a popular, gifted student with a bright future. Everyone who knew him will remember him for being kind, caring and selfless; giving his time to listen and support others.

"Kieran went to university to become a doctor and wanted to help others with their mental health. We urge those who are affected by depression not to suffer in silence – but to talk, seek help and the support of family, friends and professionals. Finally, we ask that you respect our privacy at this very difficult time."