Was Her Cause of Death Preventable?

It hasn't even been a full day since Joan Rivers' cause of death was revealed by the New York Medical Examiners' Office and there's already suspicion about it, at least according to TMZ. The official report stated that Rivers died of a pulmonary attack that led to loss of oxygen to the brain and subsequent damage and I hoped having a definitive cause would resolve the lingering mysteries of her tragic passing and allow the real healing to begin. But TMZ reports that a source close to the investigation believes that someone allegedly messed up Rivers' medical procedure and that's what led to the pulmonary attack.

The sources are, of course, anonymous and TMZ's stories should frequently be taken with a grain of salt, but what they're saying is truly depressing. The sources are disagreeing with the Medical Examiners' Office, one stating that the complication had nothing to do with the Propofol that Rivers was administered and another outright claiming that "the procedure was actually completed when Joan suffered brain damage from a lack of oxygen." All together, people are telling TMZ that there were no underlying health factors that contributed to Rivers' passing and that the fault rests solely on the clinical professionals who were performing the procedure.

In many ways, it comes as no surprise that a story like this would come out. Ever since Rivers' untimely passing, and even when she was fighting for her life in the hospital, death threats and blame were being cast on the Yorkville Endoscopy Clinic. There are even rumors that Rivers' daughter, Melissa Rivers, is going to pursue a lawsuit against the clinic. According to TMZ, that suit would be helped by these rumors because the fact that the Medical Examiner's Office summarized her death as due to "predictable complications" could mean that "[people in Rivers' life] think it could be a focal point in a possible malpractice action because predictable could also mean preventable."

At this point, we have no idea what the Medical Examiner's Office actually meant by "predictable complications" or if TMZ's sources are correct in thinking that anyone at the clinic was at fault for the tragedy. All we know is that it might be a while before the ongoing investigation either reveals the horrible truth or clears the clinic of any wrongdoing...and an even longer while before they're absolved in the eyes of the public.