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Brittany Murphy's Cause Of Death, Explained

Brittany Murphy's Cause Of Death, Explained

What Happened, Brittany Murphy?, HBO Maxs new two-part documentary, takes a fresh look at Murphy's tragic and unexpected death in 2009. The actor, who was only 32 when she died, gained fame in the early 2000s after starring in Clueless. Murphy's time in the spotlight was marred by endless paparazzi harassment and shocking public criticism of her body, just like Britney Spears and Paris Hilton. Its clear that Hollywood and the media were only a part of the factors that contributed to her untimely passing.

Murphy died on Dec. 20, 2009, as a result of untreated pneumonia in combination with anemia and drug intoxication from over-the-counter and prescription medications. Dr. Lisa Scheinin, the deputy medical examiner who conducted Murphys autopsy, elaborates on her findings from a decade ago in What Happened, Brittany Murphy? Murphys anemia had become life-threatening, according to Scheinin, owing in part to Murphy's poor calorie intake. Murphy herself had spoken of the pressures shed endured to lose weight in order to secure roles in Hollywood, and similar pressure from her husband Simon Monjack, according to Murphy.

Although Murphys assumed drug use is often associated with her death, Dr. Scheinin stated that no evidence of alcohol or any drugs of abuse in her system other than prescription and over-the-counter medications, such as painkillers and cold medicine, was there any evidence that alcohol is involved in the patient s treatment. Scheinin believes that Murphys life might have been saved if shed received the medical care she so desperately needed. According to the documentary, if she had been admitted to a hospital early enough, you could detect pneumonia on x-ray, she claims. It's very simple to do. She would've had a chance to start treatment, but she wouldn't have had any.

Murphy didnt go to the hospital during her final days, and its impossible to say for certain why, but many of the people in her life believe that Monjack, whom they described as controlling, wouldn t let her go. I believe that Simon Monjack even if he did not kill Brittany Murphy merely allowed her to die because 'he didn't get her on the road or get help,' Mon Jacks former fiance Elizabeth Ragsdale says in the documentary. Murphy had been suffering from laryngitis, but Monjack initially downplayed the severity of Murphys condition, claiming that she was perfectly healthy and well in the days before her death, with nothing unusual to report. Monjack said his wife was actually breathing difficulties in the days before she passed, according to Larry King. Murphy, according to him, had even wondered aloud if she was dying, making it even more frustrating why Monjack didn't take her to the hospital. Monjack died five months after Murphy of similar causes, which was unusual.

Call 911 or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1(800) 799-SAFE (7233) or visit if you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence.

If you or someone you know has an eating disorder and needs assistance, call the National Eating Disorders Association helpline at 1-800-931-2237, text 741741, or chat online with a Helpline volunteer here.

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