Belfast Telegraph

Singer George Michael died of heart disease, says coroner

By Laura Harding

George Michael died of heart disease and a build-up of fat in his liver, a coroner has said.

The singer, who was found dead on Christmas Day, died of dilated cardiomyopathy with myocarditis and fatty liver, which can be linked to drug and alcohol abuse.

The 53-year-old, who had chart-topping hits including Last Christmas and Freedom, suffered health scares and fought drug addiction for years. Oxfordshire's senior coroner, Darren Salter, said inquiries into Michael's death are now over and the final post-mortem examination report has been received.

There will not be an inquest because the Wham! star died of natural causes.

He added: "No further updates will be provided and the family requests the media and public respect their privacy."

Michael's boyfriend, Fadi Fawaz, tweeted a black and white photograph of him being embraced by Michael with the caption: "The Truth is out..."

Dilated cardiomyopathy, a disease of the heart muscle, affects how blood is able to pump around the body.

It can be an inherited condition or can be caused by viral infections, uncontrolled high blood pressure, problems with the heart valves or excessive drinking.

Myocarditis, an inflammation in or around the heart, is usually caused by a viral, bacterial or fungal infection, while different types of fatty liver disease can be caused by obesity or excessive drinking.

Tributes were paid to the singer at the recent Brit and Grammy Awards ceremonies.

Coldplay's Chris Martin sang alongside Michael's rendition of his ballad A Different Corner at the Brits while clips from his career were played. At the Grammys, Adele performed a slowed-down version of Michael's song Fast Love after restarting her first rendition, saying the tribute was "too important".

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