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unexplained death
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unexplained death

My 30 y/o niece died suddenly and unepectantly. She had no history of illness. The original autopsy showed no cause of death, but suddenly, 9 months later and after further testing of heart tissue sample and blood samples, the medical examiner has come back with the cause of death being Cardiomyopathy and Mitral Valve prolapse.
Why would this have not been found in the original autopsy?
Also...after her death, her husband admitted to giving her Cialis because he said he had heard it worked better in woman than in men for boosting a low sex drive. I do not believe my niece would have willingly tried this--she was very funny about taking any medications. Could the Cialis have contrinuted to her death...intentionally or unintentionally??
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Avatar_f_tn
I am very sorry to hear this most tragic situation. Usually, cardiomyopathy and mitral valve prolapse would be diagnosed at the autopsy by visual inspection of the heart. I am unclear why this was not initially reported, but it is possible that the heart was further examined by a cardiac pathologist, who made the additional diagnoses. It is also possible to send tissue for genetic analysis, which could have led to a diagnosis of some forms of cardiomyopathy which are not evident at autopsy. While mitral valve prolapse has been assoicated with an increased risk of sudden death, this area is controversial and the risk may be more related to the degree of mitral regurgitation rather than MVP as such. Cardiomyopathies are certainly associated with an increased risk of sudden cardiac death.
The data on drugs like Cialis is generally reassuring with regard to the risk of sudden death, although this is drawn from studies of men with coronary heart disease. There is currently no data that I am aware of on the risk of sudden death in women who have taken Cialis.
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2056612_tn?1330700784
Thank you for responding.
According to what we were told, my niece was buried with her heart, so they would have only had tissue/blood samples to go by with the further testing.
We received the report yesterday, which first states that the cause of death was Cardiomyopathy & Mitral Valve Prolapse, but then on the last page states that it was a fatal Arrythmia. It also states that cardiac blood tested revealed 10 mg/ml of tadalail (Cialis). Another puzzling thing for us is that it states that in the the original autopsy, all organs appear normal, healthy, no signs of disease or inflammation, this includes her heart.
In the report for the further testing it states only blood and bile samples were tested, so not sure how they feel they can determine Cardiomyopathy and MVP with that.
We just want the truth and want to know why she is gone. Not only for peace of mind, but she also has 2 small children that we need to keep safe and healthy.
It's almost like they just can't figure out why she is gone and it's been 9 months, so they need to come up with an answer to get us off their backs and to just close this case.
I thank you very much for your time and your response.
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Avatar_m_tn

While there is no data for women there is a report indicating that in a small number of men arrhythmia was reported after taking Cialis - see post.
http://www.ehealthme.com/ds/cialis/arrhythmia.

Sometimes there are no answers to some questions especially when there is so little data.  Hope this helps.
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm sorry for your loss! Especially that there were children involved as well. Cardiomyopathies really need to be seen under the microscope; if a cardiomyopathy is bad, it can be seen in the size of the heart itself during an autopsy. The problem is that arrhythmias are not 'visible'. In something like Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) the muscle fibers in the heart walls are in a disarray and there can be extra electrical pathways that have developed; arrhythmias can run down these extra pathways and cause a sudden death event. It's rare for this to happen, it happens in only about 2% pf the population, it's rare unless it happens to one that you love. Some cardiomyopathies can be genetic in nature, such as HCM so it is important that her children be evaluated by a pediatric cardiologist (if less than 18) or by an adult cardiologist if older than that as well as any siblings. Most University Hospitals where transplants are done have cardiomyopathy clinics and are well versed at dealing with this type of heart disease. The Cleveland Clinic and the mayo Clinic are two of the top centers for cardiomyopathy care in the country. Please make sure the rest of your family is screened for cardiomyopathies, especially her children.
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