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Vincent Jackson's Cause of Death Was Chronic Alcohol Use, Per Medical Examiner

Last week, the family of former NFL star Vincent Jackson stated that the 38-year-old, who died in February, was diagnosed with stage II chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE. On Wednesday, medical examiners revealed more about his death.

According to the Hillsborough County (Fla.) medical examiner, Jackson died from chronic alcohol use. The autopsy reportedly showed a range of medical issues, including alcoholic cardiomyopathy, hepatic steatosis and fibrosis, esophageal varices, ascites, jaundice, remote pancreatitis, renal failure and hyponatremia dehydration, cardiovascular disease and intoxication by ethyl alcohol, per ESPN. His blood alcohol content was 0.28%, the medical examiner said.

The CTE diagnosis was made after his death, by Boston University's CTE center. In his final few months, Jackson reportedly suffered from a number of issues linked to the brain condition, including depression, memory loss and paranoia. 

A second-round pick out of Northern Colorado, Jackson put together an impressive NFL career through stints with the Chargers and Buccaneers.

He made three Pro Bowls, earning the honors in 2009, '11 and '12. He finished his career with 540 receptions for 9,080 yards and 57 touchdowns. 

“Vincent dedicated so much of his life to helping others. Even in his passing, I know he would want to continue that same legacy,” Jackson's widow Lindsey Jackson said in a statement after the CTE diagnosis. “By donating his brain to the VA-BU-CLF Brain Bank, we hope to continue to see advancements in CTE research, enabling physicians to diagnose the disease in the living and ultimately find treatment options in the future."

Jackson was discovered alone in a Hillsborough County hotel room last February, after checking in on Jan. 11. He was initially reported missing by his family, and found at the hotel two days later. Three days after the missing persons case was closed, Jackson was discovered dead in the room.

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