Report: Brittany Murphy Was Prescribed 200 Pills Per Month
Brittany Murphy died after going into cardiac arrest at her Hollywood Hills home on Sunday, December 20, 2009.
Murphy sometimes got as many as 400 pills under the alias Lola Manilow Murphy at Eddie's Pharmacy in Los Angeles for nearly two years, TMZ reported. The pharmacy apparently cut her off four months before her death.
Pharmacy records show Murphy was getting regular prescriptions for hydrocodone, clonazepam and Klonopin, and Vicoprofen, according to TMZ. One month, the actress supposedly was prescribed 200 hydrocodone and 100 clonazepam, and another month, she got 300 Vicoprofen and 100 Klonopin.
All the medications were prescribed by Dr. Richard Kroop, according to the reports. Investigators visited Kroop Friday afternoon.
Coroner's officials have concluded that Murphy's death was accidental, but probably preventable.
Last month, the Los Angeles County coroner's office said severe anemia left Murphy weak and vulnerable to pneumonia as well as the prescription drugs she took to treat it.
The coroner's report also stated that Murphy's menstrual period contributed to her anemia and left her weak and prone to infection. A host of drugs, including hydrocodone and acetaminophen, also affected her health.
She died after collapsing in the bathroom of her Hollywood Hills home on December 20, 2009. She had been suffering flu like symptoms in the days before her death. Officials had said Murphy's unexpected death appeared to be from natural causes, and there were no signs of trauma to the actress' body.
When paramedics arrived, police notes say, Brittany was "without signs of life." The actress was in full cardiac arrest when she arrived at Cedars-Sinai Hospital, and was declared dead shortly after 10 a.m.
An autopsy found no evidence that Murphy abused drugs.
Investigators found numerous prescription medications in the actress' home, which she shared with her mother, Sharon, and husband, Simon Monjack. She was taking Topomax, an anti-seizure medication also used for migraine headaches; Methylprednisolone, an anti-inflammatory; Fluoxetine, a medication for depression; Klonopin, an anti-anxiety medication; Carbamazepine, for diabetic symptoms and a bipolar medication; Ativan, another anti-anxiety medication; Vicoprofen, a pain reliever; Propranolol, for hypertension and to prevent heart attacks; Biaxin, an antibiotic; and hydrocodone, a pain medication.
Murphy had also been complaining of severe abdominal pain for seven to ten days before her death, according to the report. Her family thought the pain was due to her menstrual period. They said she often complained of severe cramps.
She had a doctor's appointment on the day she collapsed, but died before that appointment, according to Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter.
Murphy had a history of hypoglycemia, and was hospitalized in April 2009 for low blood sugar while filming on location in Oregon.
In 2005 the actress faced questions about her apparent weight loss and conjecture that it could be related to cocaine use, which she denied.
"I am also way too high-strung," she's quoted as saying. "I can't even take a Sudafed. Can you imagine? My God. I think my heart would explode. I mean, literally something terrible. That's awful."
Murphy appeared upbeat at a Dec. 3 fashion event, in what may have been her final public appearance. She told Access Hollywood at the event: "As far as having a New Year's resolution, I'd love to have a child next year."
Her breakthrough role came in 1995, as a dowdy high school student (and best friend of star Alicia Silverstone's character) in "Clueless."
Murphy worked steadily after that. She shared the screen with Winona Ryder and Angelina Jolie in 1999's "Girl, Interrupted."
She played Eminem's love interest in "8 Mile" and Ashton Kutcher's wife in "Just Married."
She starred as a suspicious girlfriend in 2004's "Little Black Book" and a barmaid with an abusive ex-boyfriend in 2005's "Sin City."
She also voiced Gloria the penguin in the 2006 animated film "Happy Feet."
Murphy was juggling multiple movie projects in the months before her unexpected death, wrapping two indie thrillers over the summer and preparing to shoot a romantic comedy next month.