Sleep apnea and drug use contributed to Carrie Fisher’s death

Debbie Reynolds, 84, died in Los Angeles on December 28, 2016, one day after her daughter Carrie Fisher (R) died. They are shown in January 2015 when Reynolds received the Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Award. Fisher's cause of death -- sleep apnea, heart disease, drug use and other factors -- was announced Friday. File Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI

June 17 (UPI) — Sleep apnea and other factors, including drug use and heart disease, are to blame for “Star Wars” icon Carrie Fisher‘s death, the Los Angeles County coroner’s office said.

The office released a short summary of its findings Friday, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The actress and author died at the age of 60 on Dec. 27 — just days after suffering a mid-flight, medical crisis. Her 84-year-old mother, screen star Debbie Reynolds, had a stroke while planning Fisher’s funeral and died on Dec. 28.

“My mom battled drug addiction and mental illness her entire life,” Fisher’s daughter, actress Billie Lourd, said in a statement to “People.” “She ultimately died of it.  She was purposefully open in all of her work about the social stigmas surrounding these diseases. She talked about the shame that torments people and their families confronted by these diseases.

“I know my Mom, she’d want her death to encourage people to be open about their struggles. Seek help, fight for government funding for mental health programs. Shame and those social stigmas are the enemies of progress to solutions and ultimately a cure. Love you Momby.”

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