A MUM battling depression hanged herself at home while her toddler daughter played nearby, an inquest heard.

Clare Case was discovered when her partner Alan Hodge returned home from work.

Despite his efforts to resuscitate her with the help of a neighbour, the 39-year-old, of Luton Road, Southampton , was pronounced dead by paramedics called to the scene.

Southampton Coroner’s Court heard Mrs Case had suffered with rheumatoid arthritis since 2005, which had resulted in major ankle surgery earlier this year.

But she had struggled with depression as she slowly recovered from the operation, and a few weeks before committing suicide had threatened to take her own life.

Mrs Case later said she had felt “stupid” because of her actions, and told a doctor who prescribed her anti-depressants she had no intention of harming herself.

Mr Hodge said he had seen nothing serious to suggest she was contemplating suicide, while other family members told the court they had no idea she was so ill.

Recording a verdict of suicide, Southampton coroner Keith Wiseman: “Despite the absence of a note which obviously provides conclusive evidence in itself, I’m satisfied by the method in which life ended that Mrs Case did indeed deliberately take her own life.”