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Joan Rivers' Cause of Death Revealed

Joan Rivers' Cause of Death Revealed

After passing away early last month after having a procedure at a medical center, Joan River‘s cause of death has been revealed.

“OCME [Office of the Chief Medical Examiner] has completed its investigation. The cause of Ms. Rivers‘ death is anoxic encephalopathy due to hypoxic arrest during laryngoscopy and upper gastrointestinal endoscopy with propofol sedation for evaluation of voice changes and gastroesophageal reflux disease. The manner of death is therapeutic complication,” spokeswoman Julie Bolcer said in a statement (via THR). “The classification of a death as a therapeutic complication means that the death resulted from a predictable complication of medical therapy.”

Joan basically had a lack of oxygen supply while she was under Propofol during her procedure at the medical clinic. Joan had brain damage from the lack of oxygen. The reason Joan was getting the endoscopy was because of problems due to acid reflux.

Our thoughts continue to go out to Joan‘s beloved friends and family.

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Photos: Getty
Posted to: Joan Rivers

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  • Lana M.

    Why was she under general anesthesia for an endoscopy? Typically they are done with just a local anesthetic….

  • happy666

    Because they are hurtful and unpleasant and some people prefer it with general anesthesia

  • Lana M.

    Yes, they are unpleasant and uncomfortable, but general anesthesia should be limited to only when necessary. Putting anyone under general has many risks associated with it.

  • Bridget

    She wasn’t under general. She was sedated. It’s not the same thing. I had twilight sedation (with propofol, versed, and benadryl) for both of my endoscopies.

  • Lana M.

    Yes I’m just realizing that this article didn’t mention the general. Another did but it has been updated and just mentions sedation now. Either way it’s an unfortunate event! Thanks for correcting me :)

  • Bridget

    Personally, as someone in the medical field – given Joan’s age, I never would have felt comfortable performing this outpatient. With my second endoscopy, because it was longer than my first, they had to do it in an OR at the hospital because I would be under sedation for 3x longer than the first one.

  • Merv99

    I’m not sure I understand that gobbledygook. It sounds like they weren’t properly monitoring her blood oxygen level and let her quietly asphyxiate. In other words, a stupid and easily preventable mistake cost Joan her life.

  • NRW

    My thoughts exactly.

  • Moes23

    That’s what makes it so scary

  • yaegerj

    She is and was a great talent. I will be looking forward to the future, to those new comics coming up, who will be mentored by Joan from the otherside.