Woman's Death Not Caused by Plasma Donation, Police Say

Woman's Death Not Caused by Plasma Donation, Police Say

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- An autopsy has found the death of a 20-year-old Salt Lake City woman just hours after she gave plasma was caused by a blood clot and abnormally clogged arteries and not by the procedure, South Salt Lake police said.

Michelle Waddell died Sept. 25 after giving plasma at ZLB Plasma Services in South Salt Lake. She became ill shortly after the procedure, and her husband took her to a hospital emergency room. She decided she was feeling better and left after signing a statement saying she was leaving against medical advice.

Waddell died that night in her bed.

Her family questioned whether she received proper care.

South Salt Lake police spokesman Darin Sweeten said Tuesday that medical examiners determined that she died after a blood clot was unable to pass through arteries that were abnormally clogged for such a young person.

Medical examiners do not believe her death had anything to do with her giving plasma, he said.

"They said they'd never seen that kind of clogged arteries (in someone her age)."

Boca Raton, Fla.-based ZLB Plasma Services issued a statement earlier this month said that an internal investigation found the South Salt Lake center followed proper procedures and that Waddell "was given the same thorough care, instructions and warnings as all ZLB donors."

Waddell was a first-time donor at the center, Jan Hamilton, ZLB's medical director, said.

The medical examiner's findings ended the state investigation of Waddell's death, said Jana Kettering, spokeswoman for the state Department of Health.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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