A gifted artist famous for her self-portraits, Mexican painter Frida Kahlo had a long and complicated medical history that likely contributed to the pulmonary embolism that preceded her death, as reported by CBS News in 2010. Kahlo had polio in childhood and possibly spina bifida. When she was a teenager, she was in a serious bus accident that crushed her leg and necessitated months of bed rest in a full-body cast. After decades of health issues, at 47, she developed gangrene that resulted in a leg amputation. She died in 1954, six months after the amputation, and the official cause of death was pulmonary embolism.
Actor Jimmy Stewart
Academy Award-winning actor James (Jimmy) Stewart was a big-screen superstar, well-known for classics like “It’s a Wonderful Life” and "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington." Stewart had a heart condition and used a pacemaker. In poor health in his later years, he developed a deep vein thrombosis in his leg in June 1997 which progressed to a pulmonary embolism. He died on July 2, at age 89, of cardiac arrest, a result of the pulmonary embolism from right leg thrombosis, according to his death certificate.