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The plastic surgeon who reportedly operated on Kanye West’s mother before she died faced two malpractice suits that ended in payouts and was arrested twice for driving under the influence, according to state records obtained Tuesday.
The Medical Board of California is investigating whether the license of Dr. Jan Adams should be revoked or suspended after he was arrested twice in the past four years for alcohol-related offenses, records show.
Donda West, 58, died Saturday at Centinela Freeman Regional Medical Center in Marina del Rey after she stopped breathing at her home. The coroner’s office said an initial investigation shows West may have died from surgical complications. An autopsy was scheduled to be done by Wednesday.
Adams told the celebrity Web site TMZ that he performed a tummy tuck and breast reduction on but denied any wrongdoing. He said she might have died from a heart attack, pulmonary embolism or massive vomiting.
Earlier this year, David Thornton, the state medical board’s executive director, filed a complaint with the state against Adams that included the arrests.
In a 2006 case, Adams was found guilty of driving with a blood-alcohol level of .08 or greater, and he pleaded no contest in 2003 to driving under the influence, according to the medical records.
They also indicate that in 2001, two malpractice lawsuits against Adams ended in payouts of $217,337 and $250,000. Further details were not disclosed.
Attempts to leave a message at a listed office number for Adams were not successful. A call to a home listing in Laguna Beach was not answered.
Adams told TMZ that West consulted with him over a period of four months, often changing her mind about the surgery. It was unclear when or where Adams performed the surgery.
Another plastic surgeon, Dr. Andre Aboolian of Beverly Hills, said West approached him about a procedure in June. Aboolian told West two weeks ago that she first needed medical clearance for a pre-existing condition that may cause a heart attack during surgery. He never heard back from her, said Aboolian’s publicist, Jo-Ann Geffen.
Donda West was the former chairwoman of Chicago State University’s English department. She served as chief executive of West Brands Llc., the parent company of her son’s business enterprises.
She also was chairwoman of the Kanye West Foundation, an educational nonprofit that works to decrease dropout rates and improve literacy.
West left Chicago State University in 2004 and moved to Los Angeles to manage her son’s career. People who knew mother and son said they were close.
“They seemed very caring; they laughed a lot with each other,” said Brenda Eatman Aghahowa, the chairwoman of the English and Communications department at Chicago State University. “It was clear there was a very warm relationship between them.”
Plans for West’s funeral were pending.
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