Diego Maradona’s body contained a ‘cocktail of prescription drugs’ but NO traces of alcohol or illegal substances following heart attack death, tests reveal
- The toxicology tests have now returned from the body of Diego Maradona
- Football legend shown to have zero traces of alcohol or illegal substances
- Maradona’s fragile body was full of a ‘cocktail of prescription drugs’
- Ranitidine, which has been speculated to increase cancer risk, was also found
Diego Maradona had no traces of alcohol or illegal drugs in his blood and urine when he died, it has emerged.
But he was suffering major heart, liver and kidney problems.
And the blood and urine tests carried out after a post-mortem following the football star’s tragic death in November did show up a cocktail of prescription drugs including Quetiapine, Venlafaxine and Levetiracetam, it was revealed on Wednesday.
Diego Maradona’s body contained no traces of alcohol or illegal substances, it has emerged
Some of the pills had already been named as being among those the former Naples and Barcelona star is thought to have been taking in the run-up to his untimely death at a rented home near Buenos Aires following an operation to remove a blood clot in the brain.
Quetiapine is used to treat mood disorders including depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
Antidepressant Venlaxfaxine is sometimes used to treat panic attacks. Levitiracetam belongs to a class of drugs known as anticonvulsants and is used with other medication to treat epilepsy and try to decrease the number of seizures.
The drug Ranitidine was also detected, which is used for indigestion and heartburn but is not currently available in the UK and is the focus of an ongoing investigation into whether some ingredients can increase the risk of cancer.
His coffin, draped in an Argentinian flag, was carried by his family and friends at his funeral at the Jardin Bella Vista cemetery, in Buenos Aires
Although some of the drugs found in his system can cause arrhythmia, the tests have confirmed there is no evidence Maradona was being given medication for the heart disease he was suffering.
The retired footballer’s dire state of health was laid bare in the report compiled on the back of the follow-up toxicology tests, showing Maradona was suffering liver cirrhosis, a kidney disorder called acute tubular necrosis which can lead to acute kidney failure, coronary artery disease and myocardial fibrosis.
It had already been reported that his heart weighed 503 grams, almost double that of a normal heart for a man his age.
A doctor who asked not to be named told local press: ‘His body was on the edge. Or over the edge.’
Diego was declared dead around midday on November 25.
Initial post-mortem results revealed the recovering cocaine addict, who also had alcohol problems, had suffered heart failure which caused a pulmonary edema.
Medics are also said to have detected dilated cardiomyopathy, a medical condition in which the heart muscle becomes weakened and enlarged and cannot pump enough blood to the rest of the body.
Maradona was one of the most gifted sportsmen of all time, almost single-handedly inspiring Argentina to win the World Cup in Mexico in 1986
Pulmonary edema, fluid accumulation in the lung’s tissue and air spaces, are caused by heart problems in most cases.
State prosecutors are conducting an ongoing investigation into Diego’s death to try to establish if he was the victim of sub-standard care after he left hospital around two weeks earlier following his brain blood clot op.
The former footballer’s personal physician Leopoldo Luque had his home and office searched and belongings including a computer and mobile phone seized around three weeks ago.
The office of Agustina Cosachov, a psychiatrist who was part of Diego’s care team after his hospital release, was also searched as part of the investigation.
Last week the home of a new witness, named locally as Maximiliano Trimarchi and identified as the brother of Diego’s accountant Andrea Trimarchi, was searched.
Sources close to the case told Argentinian media the new witness had been at the rented house the day Maradona died but had not made investigators aware of his presence.
Mr Luque has denied any wrongdoing.
Leopoldo Luque told reporters Maradona was ‘unmanageable’ and should’ve been in rehab
He said after the search by police and prosecutors at his home near Buenos Aires: ‘If I’m responsible for anything when it comes to Diego, it was loving him, caring for him, improving his life to the end and extending it.’
He also described the Argentinian idol as an ‘impossible’ patient who hated doctors but had a special relationship with him.
Insisting Maradona’s daily wellbeing once he left hospital on November 11 following his surgery was not his direct responsibility, he added: ‘I don’t blame myself for anything. It’s very unfair what’s happening.
‘Someone is trying to find a scapegoat here when I don’t see one anywhere.
‘We all did the best we could with Diego.’
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