Cause of death for Kanye West's mother said unclear

LOS ANGELES Thu Jan 10, 2008 6:28pm EST

Rap singer Kanye West (L) poses with his mother Donda West at the 48th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles February 8, 2006. The Los Angeles County Coroner said on Thursday the exact cause of Donda West's death in November was unclear but there was no sign of ''surgical or anesthetic misadventure.'' REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

Rap singer Kanye West (L) poses with his mother Donda West at the 48th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles February 8, 2006. The Los Angeles County Coroner said on Thursday the exact cause of Donda West's death in November was unclear but there was no sign of ''surgical or anesthetic misadventure.''

Credit: Reuters/Robert Galbraith

Related Topics

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The Los Angeles County Coroner said on Thursday the exact cause of rapper Kanye West's mother's death in November was unclear, but there was no sign of "surgical or anesthetic misadventure."

In a 17-page final autopsy report, the coroner's office attributed the death of Donda West, 58, to coronary artery disease and a number of factors related to her cosmetic surgery the day before.

West, a former university professor who helped manage her Grammy-winning son's business and educational foundation, died at a Los Angeles hospital on November 10, shortly after she was found unresponsive in her bed at home.

West had undergone a breast reduction, tummy tuck and liposuction the day before, and her surgeon, Dr. Jan Adams, came under fire in the media after a preliminary report cited possible complications from those operations.

The final autopsy report released on Thursday is inconclusive, saying that West "died from some pre-existing coronary artery disease and multiple post-operative factors following surgery."

Among the factors listed by Deputy Medical Examiner Dr. Luis Pena were aspiration of vomit, focal pneumonia, tight bandaging of the torso and her use of pain medication.

"Based on the history and available information, as currently known, the manner of death could not be determined,"

Pena said in the report.

A statement released by the coroner's office said: "There was no evidence of surgical or anesthetic misadventure."

Adams, who hosted his own plastic surgery show on the Discovery Health channel and has appeared on numerous TV talk shows, told the Los Angeles Times after West's death that nothing had gone wrong in the operating room and that she could have suffered a heart attack or overdose of pain medication.

"What came out of the autopsy released today was exactly what I thought was going to be reported," Adams told the celebrity TV show "Extra" on Thursday.

Donda West raised her son in a middle-class Chicago suburb after splitting with her husband, a former Black Panther. She helped manage the rapper's business after retiring in 2004 from teaching English at Chicago State University.

She inspired the song "Hey Mama" and in May published a book entitled "Raising Kanye: Life Lessons from the Mother of a Hip-Hop Superstar."

(Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

FILED UNDER: