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The death of Whitney Houston in the bathtub of an LA hotel room was ruled as accidental drowning which took place after the singer took cocaine. According to the coroner, Ms Houston also suffered from other health conditions such as atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries . The toxicology report stated that there were traces of marijuana, Xanax, Flexeril, a muscle relaxant, and Benadryl but these did not contribute to her death.
Atherosclerotic heart disease occurs when the arteries are clogged by plaques which harden causing reduced or blocked blood flow. Hardening of the arteries is usually associated with aging but in younger people high blood cholesterol levels or hypercholesterolemia, can cause clots to form. For most people, this is the result of an unhealthy lifestyle – most commonly, eating a diet that is high in fat. Other lifestyle factors are heavy alcohol use, lack of exercise, and being overweight and smoking both legal and illegal drugs. Hypercholesterolemia can also be a genetic condition.
The coroner ruled that Whitney’s cocaine habit contributed to her death. Cocaine use can cause a condition called vasospasm. Vasospasm is when a blood vessel spasms and leads to vasoconstriction reducing the blood flow to the area that the blood vessel serves . Vasospasm can cause a heart attack or if the person has arterial plaques, it could cause a plaque to break free and block the coronary artery.
Dr Ed Wallit of Podmedics Ltd., speculated that arterial spasming could have caused her to pass out and once unconscious she could have slipped below the water and drowned.
10108 Revised November 2012comments powered by Disqus