Cause of death determined for Joan Rivers

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NEW YORK (AP) — The New York City medical examiner says Joan Rivers died from low blood oxygen during a medical procedure.

The comedian, who was 81, died Sept. 4. She had been hospitalized since Aug. 28 when she went into cardiac arrest during a routine medical procedure at a doctor’s office to check out voice changes and reflux.

Medical examiner spokeswoman Julie Bolcer said Thursday that the cause was brain damage due to lack of oxygen. It is classified as a therapeutic complication, meaning that the death resulted from a predictable complication of surgery.

She was under propofol sedation for the procedure, according to Fox News.

The New York state health department is investigating the circumstances.

Her daughter Melissa Rivers says in a statement that the family continued to be saddened by the tragic loss.

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1 Comment

  • Deborah

    With her age the doctors could have used a different methods of sedation? Lack of oxygen will cause the brain cells to die, which means you don’t have much chance of survival.

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