NEW YORK: Comedian Joan Rivers, who passed away last month at the age of 81, died of a complication during a medical procedure, the New York Chief Medical Examiner’s Office said on Thursday.
Rivers was having an examination of the back of the throat and vocal cords at a New York clinic when she stopped breathing and was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital, where she was put on life support.
“The manner of death is therapeutic complication,” the medical examiner said in a statement, “the death resulted from a predictable complication of medical therapy.”
It listed the cause of death as anoxic encephalopathy, a condition caused when brain tissue is deprived of oxygen and there is brain damage.
Rivers, the brash, pioneering comedian who paved the way for women in stand-up comedy, died in hospital on Sept. 4, a week after the outpatient procedure.
“We continue to be saddened by our tragic loss and grateful for the enormous outpouring of love and support from around the world,” the comedian’s daughter, Melissa Rivers, said in a statement after the release of the autopsy report.
She had no further comment to make at this time.