Toxicology Results For Amy Winehouse Raise More Questions Than Answers
LONDON, England –“Drug free”—The mystery surrounding the death of singer Amy Winehouse continues after the Winehouse family issued a statement Tuesday saying no Illegal substances were present in Amy’s system at the time of death.
Toxicology results released to the Winehouse family this week raised more questions than answers after the 27-year-old “rehab” singer was found dead in her London home by security personnel on July 23.
Adding to the confusion was the fact that the toxicology results were given to the family and not made public in their entirety, allowing them to protect her legacy.
Addiction experts and toxicologists said the information released Tuesday did little to solve the riddle of Winehouse's death. While the cause could become clearer at a full inquest to be held on October 26, even then it could be assessed as "undetermined."
The Winehouse family did not specify if any prescription medication was found in the “Rehab” singers system. They did say, “alcohol was present, but it could not be determined as yet if it played a role in her death.”
"Combinations of perfectly legal substances can be lethal," said Jeremy Clitherow, a community pharmacist based in Liverpool, northern England, who specializes in addiction.
"You would have to look at the wording (of the toxicology report). You'd have to see the report rather than the paraphrased version. We can't speculate."
"This doesn't make me feel the loss of my daughter any less, but we are pleased to be able to set the record straight to a certain extent," Mitch Winehouse told British tabloid, The Sun.
Soon after her death, her family said they believed alcohol withdraw may have triggered a seizure which ultimately caused her death.
However, the presence of alcohol in her system when she died, coupled with stories in both the Sun and Mirror tabloids that she had been drinking in the days before her death, have led to doubts that she died from quitting.
Clitherow believed that while possible, the "cold turkey" theory was improbable based on his experience.
"It is very unusual for people to die from alcohol withdrawal," he said. "You can get delirium tremens (DTs), but normally you survive."
Moreover, the Winehouse family statement did not specify how much alcohol was in her system and what sort of impact it may have had on her overall health at the time she died.
A full inquest to be held on Oct. 26, even then it could finally put an end to the mystery.