The doctor for Joan Rivers denied she fled the procedure room in a panic after the comic went into cardiac arrest during a routine procedure.
The attorney for Dr. Gwen Korovin told The New York Times that Korovin stayed with Rivers throughout the medical emergency on August 28 and was, in fact, the last doctor remaining in room.
Dr. Korovin’s account contradicts the version of events offered in a malpractice lawsuit filed by Rivers’ daughter Melissa. Rivers, 81, died a week after what supposed to be a routine throat procedure.
The dispute of the facts surrounding the star’s death promises to continue as the lawsuit moves forward. Jeffrey B. Bloom, a lawyer for Melissa Rivers, told the Times that it was odd that Dr. Korovin didn’t step forward and do something to help Joan if she was still in the procedure room.
“If Korovin was there, why didn’t she do something,” Bloom said. “She’s an airway specialist. Why isn’t she stepping forward and saying, ‘I’ll do it,’ or ‘You do it,’ or ‘Somebody do it.’ Obviously, she did nothing.”
Meanwhile, it was disclosed that the anesthesiologist in the Rivers case, Dr. Renuka Bankulla, was previously sued after a mother she treated during childbirth died. Bankulla eventually settled the suit in 2005 for $4 million, the New York Daily News reported.
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