“The routine surgical procedure Joan Rivers was supposed to undergo turned deadly when a doctor who arrived at the clinic with the legendary comic’s entourage performed an unplanned biopsy on her vocal cords, a medical source who was briefed on the case” said, reports Don Kaplan in a scoop for the New York Daily News.
The story continues, “Such a procedure is not supposed to be performed outside of a hospital, according to medical experts. The Aug. 28 biopsy at Yorkville Endoscopy, an E. 93rd St. clinic that usually only deals with digestive issues, caused Rivers’ vocal cords to seize — a condition doctors call a laryngospasm — cutting off her air supply, the source said.
“ ‘A biopsy like that should only be done in a hospital setting,’ the source said.”
The article adds: “Rivers’ doctor — who identified himself as an ear, nose and throat specialist — asked if he could use their instruments when the clinic’s doctor noticed ‘something’ on Rivers’ vocal cords, according to the source.”
The source added: “He asked and they let him. A huge no-no.”
The story also says: “The source added that [Rivers] had only signed off on an endoscopy — not the far more dangerous biopsy of her vocal cords.”
Separately, a New York Times story says that a phone call on Rivers’ behalf “came in to 911 one second before 9:40 a.m. on Thursday, Aug. 28, from the staff at a clinic on East 93rd Street in Manhattan — a patient in cardiac arrest.”
The Times story adds: “Five minutes and 38 seconds later, at 9:45 a.m., a Fire Department engine company with trained medical responders arrived on the scene. Firefighters entered the clinic, officials said, where staff members were already engaged in trying to save Rivers.”
The Times story also notes: “By 9:50 a.m., there were 10 emergency medical workers on the scene, including a Fire Department supervisor, which is standard practice on serious calls.”
To read more details about these stories, please click on our links, above, to The New York Daily News and The New York Times.