Bruce Lee: new hypotheses on the causes of his death

The actor’s sudden death, aged 32, in 1973 has been the subject of much speculation. At the time, the authorities had concluded to cerebral edema.

A new report sheds light on the causes of Bruce Lee’s death. The actor and martial arts icon died suddenly on July 20, 1973 in Hong Kong. At the time, authorities concluded that his death was due to cerebral edema, or swelling of the brain.

If this diagnosis was the subject, 50 years ago, of many speculations, new research provide an unprecedented explanation: Bruce Lee would have died following an “inability of his kidneys to eliminate excess water”.

“kidney dysfunction”

According this reportcarried out by a group of kidney specialists in Spain, the actor had “multiple risk factors for hyponatremia”, an abnormally low concentration of sodium in the blood.

Are in particular in question according to the researchers, the consumption of marijuana of Bruce Lee (which increases the thirst) but also his taking of prescription drugs, his alcohol consumption and his history of kidney injuries, likely to have interfered with the functioning of its organs.

“We hypothesize that Bruce Lee died of a specific form of renal dysfunction: the inability to eliminate enough water to maintain fluid homeostasis…”, can we read in this report.

“This can lead to hyponatremia, cerebral edema and death within hours if excessive water intake is not compensated by the discharge of water in the urine,” the study concludes, relayed in the December 2022 edition of the specialized magazine Clinical Kidney Journal.

According to the report, although Bruce Lee did not consume much water just before his death, his kidneys were not able to handle even normal amounts of fluid. In addition, he would have followed an almost liquid diet, consisting mainly of fruit juice.

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