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Surgeon takes selfie beside unconscious Joan Rivers

Surgeon takes selfie beside unconscious Joan Rivers
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Selfies, those self-portrait photographs people snap everywhere, are the rage around the world. But this disturbing story definitely shows that some selfies push the limits of decency.

You'll recall that last month, legendary comedienne Joan Rivers underwent what was supposed to be a minor medical procedure, but ending in her tragic death. Now there's new and very disturbing reports about that procedure.

Supposedly, Joan Rivers' doctor allegedly took a selfie photograph with her while she was in surgery. At least that is what one of the on-hand medical staff members reports.

Let me just say that this is one of the most deplorable acts by a health professional I have ever heard of - and from a surgeon, no less? Let me just say that the same would be true even if the talented comedienne has recovered from the procedure.

There is just so much wrong with this, I cannot begin to tell you.

For one, there is no reason I can imagine why it would ever be OK for a surgeon to be distracted from the task at hand, particularly when the patient has been anesthetized. Not only that, while it may have been a low-risk procedure, is there really any such thing when a patient is over 80 years of age.

C'mon, are you serious? I mean, have we, as a society become so taken with celebrity that we risk their life, our career, and in this case, the Hippocratic Oath just to do something that is not only illegal, but so petty and childish?

I am literally stunned.

Selfie taken seconds before cardiac arrest

A person described as Joan's "personal ear-nose-throat physician" performed a biopsy on Joan's vocal chords just after Dr. Lawrence Cohen completed the first procedure. It seems that is approximately the time that both the selfie and cardiac arrest occurred.

While the doctor has not been publicly identified, Dr. Cohen is no longer with the medical center.

Let's go over what we know, for sure, one more time. A famous comedienne (and 81 years 0ld at that) went in for a procedure and biopsy. While she was unconscious, on the operating table, a staff member says one of the present physicians took a selfie standing by the patient. Shortly thereafter, the patient went into cardiac arrest and stopped breathing. The patient never recovered and died seven days later.

It was sad to hear that Hall of Fame worthy entertainer Joan Rivers had passed. It was just as sad to hear that it was a fairly safe procedure that claimed her. But that the doctor(s) were literally fooling around while she was so vulnerable, is stunning and devastating.

I will just say that I hope swift and severe action is taken should investigators prove the validity of the report. This type of behavior is reprehensible and has no place in our society. I am literally beside myself with rage and shock.

Prayers to Joan's loved ones during this difficult time.

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