Asthma and Cold Meds, Traces of Vicodin Found in Brittany Murphy's Body

Autopsy report states substances used to treat respiratory infections were found in actress's system; she was suffering from pneumonia at time of death

By Natalie Finn Feb 26, 2010 12:32 AMTags
Brittany MurphyRon Galella Ltd/Getty Images

The doctors weren't exaggerating when they said Brittany Murphy's death was partly caused by "multiple drug intoxication."

The Just Married star had components of Vicodin and various prescriptions used to treat colds and other respiratory conditions in her system, as well as traces of antidepressants, when she went into cardiac arrest on Dec. 20, according to the complete autopsy report obtained Thursday by E! News.

The L.A. County coroner announced earlier this month that the 32-year-old actress died of complications from pneumonia and prescription-drug use.

A lot of mitigating factors, all of which add up to one thing:

"The possible adverse physiological effects of elevated levels of these medications cannot be discounted, especially in her weakened state," the report says. "Therefore the manner of death is Accident." 

"Acetaminophen and hydrocodone are components of Vicodin," the report states, referring to the substances listed. "Chlorpheniramine is the active ingredient in some over-the-counter medications. L-methamphetamine is a component of some inhalers."

Fluoxetine, aka Prozac, was also found in her system. The common antidepressant is also used to treat anxiety in some cases.

As her family insisted, no illegal drugs were found in her system.

Investigators also reported that Murphy had complained of shortness of breath and abdominal pain during the week before she died.

She also was suffering from anemia, and was in a weakened state from the onset of her menstrual cycle when she contracted pneumonia.

—Additional reporting by Ashley Fultz and Claudia Rosenbaum


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