George Michael Died Of Natural Causes, Coroner Says

LONDON (CBSNewYork/AP) — George Michael died of natural causes as the result of heart disease and a fatty liver, a British coroner said Tuesday.

A post-mortem has found that the singer died of “dilated cardiomyopathy with myocarditis and fatty liver,” Darren Salter, senior coroner for Oxfordshire, said.

Dilated cardiomyopathy is a condition in which the heart’s ability to pump blood is limited, while myocarditis is inflammation of the heart muscle.

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Michael died at his home in Goring, England on Dec. 25. He was 53.

An initial autopsy failed to determine the cause of death. Salter said that because Michael died of natural causes, no inquest will be held.

Michael, with strong Greek-Cypriot roots, was born Georgios Panayiotou in England.

The British pop superstar reached early fame with WHAM! and went on to a solo career lined with controversies and chart-topping hits that blended soul and dance music with social commentary.

He remained a strong musical force throughout his career, releasing dozens of records and touring to adoring crowds despite a growing number of run-ins with police, many of them stemming from a series of driving-under-the-influence-of-drugs incidents, including several crashes.

Despite these personal setbacks, Michael’s musical performances remained strong even as his material moved farther from the teen tunes that first brought him to stardom.

Michael was active in a number of charities and helped raise money to combat AIDS, help needy children and support gay rights. He had a long-term relationship with Kenny Goss, but announced onstage in August 2011 that the two had broken up.

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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