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Amy Winehouse
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Brittany Murphy
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Brittany Murphy

Brittany Murphy was a talented actress who died too young, due to her prescription drug addiction. She was best-known for role in "Girl, Interrupted", and had been working on a film entitled "The Caller", but was reportedly fired - or left the set - because she was having trouble remembering her lines. The original probable cause of death was a heart attack.

Brittany Murphy

Friends reported that Brittany had a definite drug problem, centered around a variety of prescriptions. They called her life "living on the edge", and said she had begun running with a "bad group" of people.

Murphy had many drugs at her disposal, when she died of an apparent heart attack. The coroner eventually listed her cause of death as an accidental overdose. There were many drugs found in her system when she died. They include Hydrocodone, Propranolol, Fluoxetine, Phenazopyridine, Chlorpheniramine and Dextromethorphan.

Murphy did not have any traceable illegal drugs in her system at the time of her death, but her passing sheds even more light on the dangers of mixing prescription drugs. The autopsy stated that her death was accidental, and that the elevated levels of the various medications in her system could not be discounted, and she was in a pre-existing, weakened state.

Private Eye's ...

The detectives that worked Murphy's case reported that there were not any pills spilled around her body, and that there were some full and some empty bottles in her room. The drugs were not all prescribed for her, which is a particular problem. At least one was prescribed for her husband Simon Monjack, and at least one for her mother. The pharmacy where the regularly prescribed medications were dispensed would not have valuable information about interactions, since the medications were prescribed to different people.

Murphy had a history of problems with hypoglycemia, and she had been hospitalized for low blood sugar in 2009. Reportedly, she had been having bouts of abdominal pain and shortness of breath for over a week before she passed away.

Her mother found her in the bathroom, after she couldn't get a response after Brittany had gone in a half hour before. She discovered her daughter on the floor, and she was unresponsive. 911 was called.

Weakened Weekend ...

Her husband stated that Brittany had been suffering from laryngitis for the days leading up to her death, and that she had been very tired, having made two movies recently. The Hollywood grapevine speculated that her death may have been hastened by anorexia, a fact that the autopsy did not bear out. The weakened condition was noted, however.

Murphy had been quite thin when seen in the days leading up to her death. She had even admitted to someone that she was worried about her current weight. She said she didn't want to be quite as thin as she had become. Brittany reportedly became addicted to prescription medications after several plastic surgeries.


As the story of the Brittany Murphy prescription drug addiction has proven, accidental deaths that involve prescriptions are not from any single one of the medications, as a rule. They occur when medications are mixed with other prescription drugs, over the counter drugs or alcohol. There are many drugs that are dangerous to mix with other drugs or alcohol, including anti-anxiety drugs, sleeping aids and antihistamines.

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