Wed 10 Sep, 2014 12:34 pm
Clinic where Joan Rivers had fatal procedure denies ever performing biopsies on patients
BY Don Kaplan , Corky Siemaszko
NEW YORK DAILY NEW
Published: Wednesday, September 10, 2014, 12:32 PM
Updated: Wednesday, September 10, 2014, 12:42 PM
The private Manhattan clinic where Joan Rivers seized-up and went into a death spiral after a procedure insisted Wednesday that “a biopsy of the vocal cords” has never been done at their facility.
That claim came after the Daily News reported that a doctor who accompanied the doomed comedian to the Yorkville Endoscopy clinic performed the unplanned biopsy.
The “Fashion Police” TV host had only agreed to an endoscopy to “see why her voice had gotten raspy,” a source told The News.
The clinic also refuted The News’ report that the 81-year-old comic was under general anesthesia when something went wrong.
“General anesthesia has never been administered at Yorkville Endoscopy,” it said. “The type of sedation used at Yorkville Endoscopy is monitored anesthesia care. Our anesthesiologists utilize light to moderate sedation.”
Citing confidentiality rules, the clinic on E. 93rd St., which specializes in digestive issues, did not mention Rivers by name in its statement.
But that’s where the funny lady was brought on Aug. 28 for what should have been a routine procedure. She died eight days later.
There was no immediate comment to the clinics’ claims from Rivers’ family.
Citing a source, The News reported that Rivers’ doctor — an ear, nose and throat specialist whose name was not immediately available — asked if he could perform the biopsy when one of the clinic’s doctors noticed “something” on the performer’s vocal cords.
“He asked and they let him,” the source told The News. “A huge no-no.”
That caused Rivers’ vocal cords to tighten up — a condition called laryngospasm — cutting off her air supply and causing her to go into cardiac and respiratory arrest, the source said.
The first 911 call went out at 9:39 a.m., according to reports.
Six minutes later, paramedics and first responders arrived at the clinic.
By 10:08 a.m., Rivers was at Mount Sinai Hospital and on life support, the reports state.
The Brooklyn-born Rivers died on Sept. 4 after the machines that were keeping her alive were turned off. She was eulogized Sunday at a star-studded funeral at Temple Emanu-El on the Upper West Side.