Carrie Fisher Had Cocaine, Heroin, Ecstasy in Her System, Autopsy Shows

Carrie Fisher heart attack
REX/Shutterstock

Carrie Fisher had cocaine, methadone, heroin and ecstasy in her system when she died in December, according to an autopsy report released Monday.

The coroner’s report listed sleep apnea as the primary cause of death, with drug intake as a contributing factor. The report stated that Fisher’s family objected to a full autopsy, and coroner’s investigators had access to limited toxicology specimens. The conclusions were based on toxicology results and an external examination of Fisher’s body.

Fisher died on Dec. 27, four days after going into cardiac arrest on an airplane arriving at LAX from London. The report states that Fisher’s assistant was on the plane with her. The assistant reported that she was awake and normal at the beginning of the flight, but had “multiple apneic episodes, which was her baseline” during the flight. At the end of the flight, she could not be awoken.

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“Based on the available toxicological information, we cannot establish the significance of the multiple substances that were detected in Ms. Fisher’s blood and tissue, with regard to the cause of death,” the report states.

According to the report, Fisher may have ingested the cocaine as early as three days before the flight, adding to the uncertainty about the cause of death. The report also notes a likely exposure to heroin, which could have suppressed her breathing as she went into cardiac arrest.

In addition to the illegal drugs, Fisher was also taking Prozac, Abilify and Lamictal under prescription. She was also taking oxycodone without a prescription.

The report also notes that Fisher had a history of bipolar disorder and a long history of drug use.

Carrie Fisher Autopsy Report by gmaddaus on Scribd

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  1. John Trapp says:

    Well that goes without saying, just looking at her mouth constantly twisted into a bizarre pucker told me she was completely tweaked out of her mind.

  2. Steve says:

    So apparently Carrie Fisher’s autopsy showed high levels of… NONE OF OUR DAMN BUSINESS! If an autopsy report makes you feel differently about Carrie Fisher, you never deserved her in the first place. Many people with mental health issues use drugs to cope. We shouldn’t think any less of them. She fought a tough battle. Let her rest in peace. Carrie Fisher was a badass. The End.

  3. M.R. says:

    Let the poor woman rest.

  4. Dee says:

    Somethings should just be kept private.

  5. S says:

    And since likely SOMEone is going to chime in with ‘Well, why did you read the article then’?, I DID NOT..one nanosecond glance at the glaring headline and scrolled thru directly towards comments where I also saw some kind of ‘document’reproduced…one doesn’t have to stick their head directly INTO a building to know that there’s a fire…

  6. S says:

    WHY,oh why must we,most of us consumers of varied artists’ product, hype these people,exalt them,chase them throughout their lives,and then oftentimes chew them up and spit on them once they either can’t live up to unrealistic standards anymore and/or die? Many times, the very’torture’or ‘demons’they’ve had manifest themselves to make their art a cut above, and when they for whatever reason can no longer be the performing monkeys we all come to expect and even demand,folks cannot jump fast enough on the cut ’em down bandwagon..for pity’s sake,at the core of it all,they’re only people,flesh & blood,plenty of flaws and their own hearts..

  7. Bikerchella says:

    I am a doctor, a fan of Ms Fisher, and in bereavement of her death. And, I want to know if any of the medical documents published in the article was authorized by her family- was it? This is basic intrusion of personal medical information if it wasn’t. I am sad that this lady had her addictions as well as her maladies, and wonder if one contributed to the other, but I digress. I personally wouldn’t want my medical autopsy published, regardless of public sentiment or requests.

    • Her daughter and her family are ok with it and they think her story will encourage people with addictions to seek help.

      If you’re a true Carrie Fisher’s fan, you’d know she’s very open and most likely she’d want her death to help other people.

    • Rosie says:

      Agreed on the passed to at least carry thier privacy to the grave. For that information to be published in view of the world is as I see it so wrong/messed up, in fact isn’t that illegal to do if you weren’t given consent to do so by whoever those rights are carried upon?

  8. cg says:

    Nice reporting. Real tasteful. Thanks for letting us know. Instead of glorifying a wonderful person, actress and writer, you Gene, go to the lowest level of slimy inhuman decency and revel in the most deplorable parts of human behavior and try and smear a good soul. Nice work sir. You have contributed to why journalism is beginning to be hated, because of the excuse that the public has a right to know. There’s a difference between a right to know and a need to know. But you Gene, I guess in your journalistic taste decided that this was something that we as the public really needed to know. Well thank you Gene, and Variety for that matter, for letting us know this. You obviously have to class and your are obvioulsly the slimy crappy journalists that we can come to expect from gossip rags and Perez Hilton. Carrie Fisher was a wonderful person, and like any good human, had problems. But those problems made her human. Gene, you are a horrible human being obviously. Shame on you Variety.

    • Jacen says:

      Actually, cg, you are the one who is horrible and distasteful and typical of the fashionable hatred that fuels the mindset of so many internet denizens. I say that because there is nothing in the above article that is strident or condemning or overly loaded with adjectives–all the stuff that would suggest the type of hatchet job you are claiming. Reread the article again (and do so away from your Carrie Fisher shrine). It merely presents the facts of the case. You may not like these facts, but the facts have been released–now some seven months after Ms. Fisher’s death–and are here being reported. Shame on YOU, sir.

  9. melindac321 says:

    Does it really matter now what she was taking?She was a very wonderful actress and singer.All yhat mayters is shes at peace.God bless

  10. Tracy Duncan says:

    The report says she died of sleep apnea, but you have to make sure that cocaine, heroine and any other drugs are added to article also. Sleep apnea isn’t enough. you have to add in the dirt.

  11. Megan says:

    There is still too much stigma and not enough help for mental illness. It gets shrugged off as weakness or trying to get attention. Drugs, alcohol, cutting, suicide attempts and so many other harmful crutches in an attempt to cope with a difficult illness or a cry for help that just isn’t being taken seriously. Not enough money is put into mental health to prevent future illnesses or addictions; if they took the effort into helping people instead of making them feel more isolated there could be so many more that are happier and healthier. Therapy and drugs are so expensive but preventative measures are the best way to go as it is cost and life saving from future attempts for desperate people using drastic tactics to cope in unhealthy ways that usually puts everything and themselves in worst condition. It is so sad that she couldn’t find the help she desperately needed.

  12. Jeremy Bartlett says:

    Regardless of the contributing factors that led to Carrie Fishers death, morbid curiosity is “normal” these days amongst those who have been seduced by the darkside of Hollywood’s elite. Not only to we crave to be entertained by their onscreen antics, we also thirst for the drama and intrigue in the civilian lives these thespians try lead long after the box office has dried up! Tragic circumstances leading to a Stars death is all to often a sequel to a blockbuster career!

  13. Zippo says:

    ho-hum…another Hollywood drug related death in the month of December around the 26th of December. Strange how these stars die. Very strange.. maybe they are just too illuminated ..its a shame Variety will never have the courage to ask the real questions concerning her death.. Sad..

  14. jim says:

    Many people with mental illness try to self medicate it usually starts with alcohol. Ad onto that sleep apnea. wow thats a very heavy lift. She hid it well.

  15. kate says:

    Why do you keep saying she had oxycodone in her system…without a prescription. Did you read the report? It CLEARLY states NO oxycodone in her system….retract and apologize!!!!

  16. paully says:

    Poor CF.. I miss her every day.. When long time “clean” users go back to substance abuse they fall into a trap of using as much as when they were active users.. OD’s can happen then..

  17. What s shame if it was indeed drugs. To some of the folks commenting, I don’t really need to know all this detail. BUT I admit I was curious. In an ideal world, Carrie Fisher lives, finishes Star Wars 8 and 9 and rides off into the sunset. Instead we have to mourn her passing and will never know what the original plans for her character were about. It is a shame it took so long for a Star Wars revival to come about. But her character lives on in novels.

  18. trafficvixen says:

    I’m surprised. But glad. And I think she would want us to know. She didn’t keep secrets or hide her struggles during her lifetime. She wouldn’t want to now.

  19. “,,,could not be awoken”? Seriously? Where are the grammar and proofreading talents anymore? Why are these skills not taught to aspiring journalists anymore? Regardless of the new and what you think people want to read, REPORT IT PROPERLY!

  20. Paul McFee says:

    This is disgusting journalism. Nobody but her family needs to see this information. The celebrity obsessed culture in the U.S has reached epidemic proportions. There is a game show host in the white house, the senate is trying to kick 24 million people off healthcare and this is what makes the news? A poor woman’s guts splattered all over the place for all the vultures to pick through? Utterly disgusting.

    • Gigi says:

      The headline clearly stated what it was about. Yet you read it and then complained about it. Be careful what you let your eyes see if you don’t like it. should have passed on the read. I love her all the same.

      • I agree with you about celebrity obsessed culture, but to post a rant about celebrity news on Variety is a little tone deaf. Variety is not CNN or The New York Times. It’s Variety magazine – it is completely about entertaintment industry news. Granted, details of a celebrity death are not of critical importance for even a film industry news site, but in the case of Carrie Fisher – she wrote books, movies AND performed a one-woman show ALL about her drug addiction and struggles with bi-polar disorder. Why did she do that? To educate people. Yes, it may be salacious and all that, but it also raises awareness about how dangerous drug addiction can be and illuminates the glorification of celebrity lifestyle. So I’m not sure I agree that there is no point in reporting this on a celebrity news website.

      • hobodojo says:

        Your missing the point.. Regardless of why it was read, it is the OP’s(and my own) opinion that it should never have been printed for anyone to read. Do you think CF would have wanted this made public?
        What it boils down to is a lamentation on the cult of personality. Pointless I know, but it had to be said. Thank you for saying it Mr. McFee.

        Please continue feeding..

      • Ed says:

        Why is it so important for you to know this information? For some reason I have doubts about this. I may be wrong. What has this world come to when it is important to know things like this. I only opened this article to say my piece not because I care what might have been in her system. Your life must be really exciting.

  21. Ali Akashah says:

    It is sad enough when we lose an idolized celebrity, but it is even more sad to learn the disgusting truth about his/her vice-turned-bane, particularly drug abuse. Who would ever assume that Carrie Fisher turned out to be such an addict? Nevertheless, she still remains my favorite kind of “princess.” You broke our hearts with, but you left a legacy.

    • Ura Dumas says:

      It’s pretty clear she was actively battling the addiction by the constant presence of methadone in her system. Addiction is now classified as a disease, and should be treated as such. The fact alone that she was fighting the addiction with methadone means she was at least trying. That is like shaming somebody for dying of cancer, just because they hid it. “Oh, I liked Patrick Swayze until I found out he had cancer. Who would ever assume that Patrick Swayze turned out to have cancer?”

    • Gigi says:

      Sorry but EVERYONE knew about her drug abuse. she was an open book. she didn’t hide anything she was up to.

  22. Pooky says:

    Oh I see here that Rudy Mario ,,whoever he is, is a person of very little compassion…..whatever… I feel bad about seeing this stuff. BUT Nobody knows the depth of her depression or everything about her life……….. Sorry for you Carrie……..we can have sympathy…& prayers for you.

  23. mo cooke says:

    Really sad to post all of her medical information publicly. Let the woman rest in peace. Give her and her family some dignity and privacy.

  24. Rudy Mario says:

    Deserves no sympathy…..was given many chances that only the previliged get. Wasted it.

  25. Theresa Powers says:

    So much for her claims to be a member of Alcoholics Anonymous. But I know for a fact that Los Angeles AA will use drugs and alcohol on their sobriety birthdays. Alcoholics Anyonymous is a fraud.

  26. thumper says:

    Celebrities love to pretend to be decent people while they selfishly buy drugs & keep the drug trade alive that kills millions of people annually.

    • Gigi says:

      Good lord, thumper. She is one person. The other millions of people are also keeping the drug trade alive, and I bet they don’t give Carrie or any other “star” a thought while they’re doing what they do. Don’t put all of it on carrie.

  27. Linda C.Black says:

    We should never put one down if they die! Media all bullshit ! Give respect to family.

    • Gigi says:

      Linda this is what happens when people are “public figures” Interesting that you read it and complained.

      • Paul McFee says:

        She probably came to make a point, like myself. Leave the poor woman alone, she is dead already. Fucking jackals.

  28. vincent verderame says:

    she was a junkie, why are we paying tribute to her??? she was a good actress in starwars . michael jackson was a junkie, prince was a junkie, but yet we pay tribute to them….. they touched us in so many ways but paying tribute to people that has drug problems is sending the wrong message to the youth of america by glorifying drug use

    • Everyone has demons and challenges to fight. However, only a few leave their footprints in stone; while the Sands of time washe away the rest of our footprints. The people you berate may have had demons, but they will be remembered long after no one remembers your name. This is why we pay hommage.

      • Jenn says:

        So, people without vices are the only ones you think are worthy of homage?

      • Sex God says:

        That her claim to “immortality” is solely and totally dependent on the words of George Lucas only makes it that much more pathetic.

  29. Tom says:

    With that combination of drugs in her system would cause her breathing to become slow & erratic regardless of whether or not she had sleepacnia.

  30. 1Ronald says:

    Will there also be an autopsy of her mom, Debbie Reynolds? You don’t go and say I’m going to join my daughter and then die that night. Toxicology results hold no secrets. Yes, I’m sure Eddie is spinning in his grave at that train wreck of a family he left behind. This is so foolish when anyone has marketable talent and still can’t get their own act together in life.

  31. Paul says:

    What purpose does this serve to let the public know of this?? She is dead. Her mom is dead. Let her rest in peace! ..smh

    • Laura James says:

      Isn’t anyone personal life and death private?? Let her Rest In Peace for god sakes what business is this woman’s tox report anyway? Can’t find anything else to write about.

  32. Weary says:

    Geez – an old fart like you? Should have known better. Stick to the chronic – look at Willie Nelson.

  33. Junebug43 says:

    This is very sad. Posting a celebrities toxicology DOES NOT SAVE Lives. That is utterly ridiculous, disrespectful of people in recovery who work the program/and or do what needs to be done to stay sober. It is hard work! longtime addict like her without years of recovery should stay away from Hollywood and anything that causes her stress. Unfortunately Hollywood has the big bucks and more drug pushers than the streets and can pay for her habit. She didn’t die an Advocate for mental HEALTh but in her disease. The magazine publishes the death of famous addicts to make money and to embarrass the addict, not to help people.

  34. Kolan says:

    The Lady is DEAD. Does it really matter now what was in her system? Respect her families wishes! May she rest in peace.

    • Marie says:

      Yes, it does matter, when the lady died without good reason at the early age of 60.

      The public deserves to know.

      • James says:

        So when you die Marie you are okay with having your autopsy spread about to the public? I mean, they deserve to know right? Seriously, that’s an asinine statement. Just because she was a celebrity no one but her immediate family and proper authorities has any right to knowing how she died.

  35. Bear Hampton says:

    People will ALWAYS look for the worst, “The good that men do is oft interred with their bones”.

  36. Gord says:

    People make bad choices. Consequences. Duh!

  37. reader says says:

    My comment below is to zinnsand21.

  38. reader says says:

    Then stop reading about it.

  39. cysterwigs says:

    I keep reading comments from people who are saying, “Yeah, but that shouldn’t have been made public,” or, “why can’t they just let her rest in peace?”

    I could not disagree more.

    YES. It should have been made public, and part of me genuinely thinks that Carrie Fisher would have wanted it that way.

    We need to shake off the social stigma of addiction and substance abuse in this country so people actually talk about it and get some help!

    Given Carrie Fisher’s history as a mental health advocate, I cannot help but think that is how she would want it. She always gave us glimpses into her personal struggle, perhaps because that may be what someone out there needs to push them into getting treatment. Even if it’s only one person, it’s worth it. That is the attitude she used when she frequently used her life’s example as the butt of a joke. It made her a hero OFF the screen. Her vulnerability and openness made her REAL.

    Why stifle that voice now just because it makes YOU uncomfortable? We’re talking about a fatal disease, people. Get over yourselves.

    Besides, she’s dead. She isn’t here to feel shame about this. Her legacy isn’t going to be tarnished. People knew she had deep problems — and it is what made her such a human, endearing, and inspiring figure.

    The fact that she continued to struggle really highlights how difficult it can be for even brilliant, insightful, self-aware people with the world at their feet to get clean. This is not something we need to silence into submission. Addiction is a disease that thrives — and kills people — in the shadows. I can’t help but have a strong suspicion that she would call BS on the calls to keep this quiet.

    I am happy we’re discussing it. I am convinced she would be too.

    • Gigi says:

      I absolutely agree with you. Of all the folks who are in movies, music and other entertainment, Carrie Fisher was completely open about her struggles. And not just a little, she wrote books and made movies about it. She was the most real and truthful one out there. As a bipolar person myself, I really appreciated that about her. I may not have been able to write that had it not been for Carrie’s openness. Further, addiction is forever. It’s not “over” when a person stops. The majority of folks stop hundreds of times and do it again. I’m just a bit younger than Carrie was @ 55 yrs old. But I get it. I’m back in school again at this late time in my life working on a degree in social work. Silence and stigma are the enemy. And like you, I’m very sure that Carrie would most definitely have wanted to share this information. But I’m sure she would rather be alive, too. RIP, Carrie.

    • Susan Skawinski says:

      She has died; the details of her death are a private matter and should not be published this way. I think it is sad, let her rest in peace… a lot of glass houses perhaps that are not famous enough for a rag to publish their vices may find this somehow entertaining, but I disagree. Privacy and respect when someone passes.

      • Katran says:

        Cysterwigs, I completely agree with you. Carrie was an icon to many and her story, her full story, could help someone else struggling with the same issues with mental health and drugs that she went through. It might be the wake up call that someone else needs. She has been open for years about her mental health and drug abuse issues so I also believe that she would want this information to be made public in the hopes that it could help others. Hiding it and making a “dirty secret” out of it would be the real shame.

  40. zinnsand21 says:

    There is little that is functional or healthy about Hollywood..

  41. Maureen Hoeler says:

    there was NO NEED TO KNOW this. Let the woman rest in peace and her family heal. SHAME ON YOU FOR BLABING THIS.

  42. princess says:

    She dragged herself through the mud. Variety is doing responsible and thorough reporting and this helps save lives. Why burry it?

  43. Shawn says:

    She could have gotten all of those in her system with one hit of XTC…depending on where she got it. Some people lace their shit with everything…

  44. ranapatel9 says:

    Why did the coroner even conduct an autopsy? Was murder suspected? If the family requested it then the results would have been kept known to the family only and not made public.

  45. Just like Prince, Elvis, Princess Di (yes the cocaine), Michael Jackson, Whitney, Farley, Winehouse and so many others, take a look at the people around her and for sure you will see enablers and providers of a doomed lifestyle…no one is brave enough or “friend” enough to step and tell them what they’re doing is wrong, then its too late..

    • AC Walker says:

      Yes, because lord knows people with mental illness and addiction problems have no idea that what they’re doing is bad for them unless judgmental busy-bodies tell them.

    • Donna says:

      Princess Di did not die from a drug overdose! That is really rude and cold hearted of you!! She was in a severe car accident, not wearing a seat belt and died from her injuries at the hospital. WOW……I can’t believe you put her in this category. You should be ashamed of yourself!!

      • Jane says:

        I’m not sure if Di used drugs or not, but the commenter never said she died of an overdose. The commenter said she was a cocaine user.

      • Ren Left says:

        um you should get your story straight. Princess Diana was murdered, and that’s all there is to it.

  46. Just another celebrity self-medicating and trying to cope. Nothing to see here, folks. : )~

  47. Je Vizzusi says:

    This is a- typical of life on a movie set. No sleep, stay awake using hard drugs and ultimate death. Its been going on for generations in Hollywood.

    Productions especially as big as the one Carrie was on think they are all above the law. They have their own rules and as long as you are on time, know your lines and make Mr Director happy nobody gives a shit if you have slept or a coke addict.

    Variety knows the score the best. They have printed more obituaries about stars that die than anyone on earth. (The Sunshine Boys) Prince was 104 pounds, Carrie doin Ecstasy.. will it ever end? So sad.. RIP

    • heyitsron says:

      Je, you sound as if you’ve been there. Recall one movie I was in I got home at 9pm, went to bed at 10pm, got up at 12 midnight, and was back on set at 2am. You do what you have to do while filming without putting any of that crap in you. She could bask in warm sunlight, breathe in ocean air, ride a bike, but she chose to destroy herself instead and thought she was fooling the public. It all comes out in the end just as it should.

  48. Tally Haugen says:

    She had severe troubles yes, but Carrie was the object of great Love and a mother who loved her dearly enough to make SURE she wasn’t alone, and followed her. . I don’t know the RIGHT or WRONG of any of this, but there is also a brother and a daughter involved here, who deserve something in the way of PEACE..Carrie and Debbie deserve PEACE too! A Family w/ Trouble, but they gave many people great JOY too..Please! DON’T pick them apart!

  49. Liza Null says:

    Now WHY, pray tell, does the public need to know this? WHY? To what purpose, to what good does it serve??

    You people are such VULTURES. I can picture all of you – nasty, ill-tempered and smelling of roadkill, sitting around your big table, sniping at each other as you pick the bones clean.

    • Gigi says:

      Yet you read it. You are a vulture, too. Pot calling the kettle black. Yep.

    • heyitsron says:

      Liza Null, I take that as a vote for inferential statistics’ famed null hypothesis. Still, when you become a public icon as Carrie the public has a right to know. When you trade your privacy for stardom you owe your loyal public a greater care than this. Witness the many commenters here that appear heart broken that Carrie used the wrong choice. Dumb Carrie.

    • Howard Roth says:

      The public should know this because Carrie Fisher put herself out very publicly as someone who overcame addiction and mental health issues – and relapsed, and overcame – and on and on. What a mess.

    • Syncopator says:

      Did you read Billie Lourd’s statement?

    • Je Vizzusi says:

      Maybe the specific details will help others that are “speedballing” on movie sets.. very Darkside indeed.

    • Agreed. This is unnecessary. She is dead. Can she not rest?

      • I don’t think the disclosure is malicious. It sells papers, one, and two, it debunks the myth that hollywood life is all glitter and glam, and that these people are the perfect family people with no bad sides. Well, the sure-fire defense to defamation is truth, so there ya have it.

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