A British woman, who was training to become a commercial airline pilot, died from an infection that developed after a mosquito bit her. The infection had spread to her brain, and the 21-year-old woman died within five days of the mosquito bite, an inquest heard.

Oriana Pepper of Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, had already aced her theory exams on the EasyJet program in Oxford and was in Belgium for her instrument ratings when the incident occurred in July 2021.

The woman's boyfriend, James Hall, said they had been bitten by mosquitos “multiple times without any reaction" since their arrival in Antwerp on May 20, 2021, according to ITV.

"We were assured by locals it was normal for the area and time of year," he said during the hearing.

But one bite turned out to be fatal for Oriana. She went to the hospital on July 7, 2021, after a mosquito bite on her forehead, near her right eye, was swollen and appeared infected. She was prescribed antibiotics and sent home. The woman later collapsed and was driven back to the hospital by her boyfriend two days later.

She “was delirious and had difficulty talking,” Hall added. The woman passed away on July 12, 2021, after spending about three days in the hospital, BBC reported.

The cause of death was found to be septic emboli in the brain. Infection by bacteria called staphylococcus aureus and an insect bite on the forehead were recorded as contributory factors.

“I've never seen a case like this before,” Suffolk's senior coroner Nigel Parsley said during Wednesday’s hearing in Ipswich. “It's just one of those things that's just such an unfortunate tragedy for a young lady who clearly had a wonderful career and life ahead of her.”

Tristan Pepper, the deceased woman’s father, said his daughter “loved nothing better than to go flying with her dad and her brother Oliver, also a trainee commercial pilot.”

For Oriana, flying was like “having an office in the sky amongst the clouds,” Tristan said while attending the inquest. “She had met someone she loved, she was training to be a commercial pilot and was fulfilling her dreams,” the father added.

Following the inquest, Oriana’s mother Louisa Pepper said they had “set up a small scholarship” in her memory to encourage more women to enter the profession their daughter was passionate about, working with the British Women Pilots' Association.

"That's a positive thing from her life," the bereaved mother said.

Representative image Credit: Pixabay / mikadago