Melissa Rivers Sues NYC Clinic Over Joan Rivers’ Death


Joan Rivers arrives at the Peter Travers and Editors of Rolling Stone Host Awards Weekend Bash at Drai’s Hollywood on February 26, 2011, in Hollywood. (Credit: Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Rolling Stone)

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Melissa Rivers is suing the clinic where her mother, Joan Rivers, had an outpatient procedure that resulted in her death a week later.

“Filing this lawsuit was one of the most difficult decisions I’ve ever had to make,” Melissa Rivers, 47, said Monday in a statement. “What ultimately guided me was my unwavering belief that no family should ever have to go through what my mother, [my son] Cooper and I have been through.”

The suit seeking unspecified damages was filed in Manhattan Supreme Court against New York City’s Yorkville Endoscopy, three anesthesiologists and two doctors, including Joan Rivers’ personal physician, Dr. Gwen Korovin — that according to the New York Daily News, which obtained the court documents.

The suit notes that in addition to an authorized endoscopy and esophageal exam, an unauthorized vocal-cord biopsy was performed. It says it was the unauthorized procedure that caused the laryngospasm — when the vocal cords seize up — that blocked Rivers’ airway and cut off oxygen to her brain, according to the Associated Press.

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