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Smith's toxic death revealed, eyes now on Daniel's death

By Stone Martindale Mar 27, 2007, 20:22 GMT

Smith's toxic death revealed, eyes now on Daniel's death

Anna Nicole Smith EPA/JASON SZENES

Anna Nicole's autopsy revealed her death was the culmination of a toxic mixture of prescription and over-the-counter drugs.  Her use of several physicians who each prescribed different medications added to the problem.  Now, the Bahamian courts are turning their focus on the unusual death of her son, Daniel, who died at her bedside.

Dr. Joshua Perper, Broward County chief medical examiner, said at a press conference Monday that each of the drugs found in Smith's body were present in levels lower than what would normally lead to overdose.  The combination of the medications led to a toxic, and ultimately lethal, effect.

Perper mentioned that a total of nine prescription drugs were found in Smith's system; however, during the press conference he also listed several other drugs, as well as one nonprescription drug and a number of supplements, which were identified during the autopsy.

Drugs clonapine (commonly known as Clonazepam or Klonopin), diazepam (commonly known as Valium) and lorazepam (commonly known as Atavan) were in her system.

Perper said chloral hydrate, a sleeping medication, was the drug which "tipped the balance" and most directly led to Smith's demise.

Many of the discovered drugs were similar in their effects, and helped harm her respiratory system, especially chloral hydrate and some of the other drugs found in Smith's system.

Perper added that there was also evidence of a number of other drugs in her system, including the antihistamine Benadryl, the flu medication Tamiflu, a muscle relaxant and the drug Topamax, which is used to control seizures, migraines and weight gain.

Smith was also taking the antibiotic Cipro, methadone for pain control, acetaminophen and a number of "anti-aging" supplements including human growth hormone, vitamin B12 and immunoglobulin.

Chloral hydrate was commonly prescribed many years ago, and the drug gained notoriety as the key ingredient in a "Mickey Finn"  a drink that had the drug dropped in it on the sly in order to cause someone to lose consciousness.

In addition to the laundry list of drugs in Smith's system, the autopsy also revealed abscesses in her left buttock. These infection filled abscesses were likely the result of improperly administered repeated injections

"The episode of high fever was most likely due to the fact that at the time of the perforation of the abscess, the infectious organisms reached the bloodstream and caused a high fever," Perper said.

Daniel Smith, Anna Nicole's son, died suddenly by his mother's bedside.  The inquest in the Bahamas has begun to shed more light on his untimely death.

TMZ reports that Howard K. Stern's attorney challenged the use of a jury to hear the case. The jury can recommend criminal prosecution if they think Daniel's death was murder.

Larry Birkhead and several key hospital witnesses, according to TMZ, are scheduled to testify today or tomorrow.

Birkhead was aware of Daniel's drug use while he lived in Los Angeles according to TMZ.  Birkhead will also testify that Stern and Anna Nicole knew that Daniel had a drug problem.  The key to the inquest is to determine how Daniel got hold of the drugs that ultimately caused his death.



FROM THE WEB

Further Reading on M&C

Anna Nicole Smith Biography - - Anna Nicole Smith Movies -

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