LAS VEGAS, NV - NOVEMBER 21: Natalie Cole performs onstage during the 14th Annual Latin GRAMMY Awards held at Mandalay Bay Re
Michael Tran/FilmMagic

Natalie Cole's family revealed the cause of death that led to the jazz/R&B legend's passing on January 1, 2016. In a statement to The Associated Press, they say the singer passed due to idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension, which led to heart failure.

Previously, Cole battled drug use and hepatitis which forced her to have a kidney transplant in 2009. After the transplant she was diagnosed with pulmonary arterial hypertension, a rare lung disease that causes shortness of breath, dizziness and sometimes chest pain, according to the AP, who adds that the exact reason she passed is unknown due to the disease's nature.

Read the statement below in full:

"(Cole) responded well to pulmonary arterial hypertension-specific agents over many years, during which she performed many concerts world-wide, but eventually succumbed to intractable right heart failure, an outcome that unfortunately commonly occurs in this progressive disorder."