Lisa Marie Presley, the only child of the legendary rock ‘n’ roll singer Elvis Presley, passed away on January 12, 2023, at the age of 54. She was found unresponsive in her bedroom at her home in Calabasas, California, and was pronounced dead at the hospital. The cause of her death was revealed to be a small bowel obstruction, a rare and potentially fatal condition that blocks the passage of food and fluids through the small intestine. In this article, we will explore what is a small bowel obstruction, how it can be caused by weight-loss surgery, and how Lisa Marie Presley’s death was similar to her father’s.
What is a Small Bowel Obstruction?
A small bowel obstruction (SBO) is a medical emergency that occurs when the small intestine is partially or completely blocked by something that prevents the normal movement of food and fluids. This can lead to symptoms such as abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, bloating, constipation, or diarrhea. If left untreated, a SBO can cause serious complications such as dehydration, electrolyte imbalance, infection, tissue death, or perforation of the bowel wall.
According to the US National Library of Medicine, some of the common causes of SBO are:
- Adhesions: Scar tissue that forms after surgery or inflammation and sticks to the bowel wall or other organs.
- Hernias: Protrusions of part of the intestine through a weak spot in the abdominal wall or groin.
- Tumors: Growths that can press on or invade the intestine from inside or outside.
- Crohn’s disease: A chronic inflammatory condition that can cause narrowing or inflammation of the intestine.
- Intussusception: A condition in which one part of the intestine slides into another part, creating a blockage.
- Volvulus: A condition in which the intestine twists on itself, cutting off blood supply and causing obstruction.
- Foreign bodies: Objects that are swallowed or inserted into the anus and get stuck in the intestine.
How Weight-Loss Surgery Can Cause Small Bowel Obstruction
Weight-loss surgery, also known as bariatric surgery, is a procedure that alters the digestive system to help people lose weight. There are different types of weight-loss surgery, such as gastric bypass, gastric sleeve, gastric banding, or duodenal switch. These surgeries can either reduce the size of the stomach, change the way food is absorbed in the intestine, or both.
Weight-loss surgery can have many benefits for people who are obese and have health problems related to their weight. However, it also carries some risks and complications. One of these complications is small bowel obstruction. According to a study published in The American Journal of Surgery, SBO is one of the most common causes of hospital readmission after weight-loss surgery. The study found that SBO occurred in 4.1% of patients who underwent weight-loss surgery and that it was more likely to occur after gastric bypass than other types of surgery.
The main reason why weight-loss surgery can cause SBO is adhesions. Adhesions are bands of scar tissue that form after surgery and can stick to the bowel wall or other organs. Adhesions can cause kinking or twisting of the intestine, creating a blockage. Adhesions can develop months or years after surgery and may not cause any symptoms until they cause an obstruction.
How Lisa Marie Presley’s Death Was Similar to Her Father’s
Lisa Marie Presley was the only child of Elvis Presley and his wife Priscilla Presley. She was born on February 1, 1968, just nine months after her parents married. She grew up in Graceland, the mansion owned by her father in Memphis, Tennessee. She inherited her father’s musical talent and released three albums over her career. She was also known for her four high-profile marriages to Danny Keough, Michael Jackson, Nicolas Cage, and Michael Lockwood.
Lisa Marie Presley had struggled with her weight for most of her life. She had tried various diets and exercise regimes but had difficulty maintaining a healthy weight. In 2016, she underwent weight-loss surgery to help her lose weight and improve her health. She had a gastric bypass surgery, which involves creating a small pouch from the stomach and connecting it to a lower part of the small intestine. This reduces the amount of food that can be eaten and absorbed by the body.
However, this surgery also caused complications for Lisa Marie Presley. According to the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner’s report, she died of sequelae of small bowel obstruction due to adhesions from bariatric surgery. The report stated that she had developed adhesions from her previous surgery that had blocked her small intestine. This caused her to suffer cardiac arrest as a result of the obstruction.
Lisa Marie Presley’s death was tragic and shocking for her family and fans. It was also eerily similar to her father’s death. Elvis Presley died on August 16, 1977, at the age of 42. He was found unresponsive in his bathroom at Graceland and was pronounced dead at the hospital. The cause of his death was officially ruled as a heart attack, but later investigations revealed that he had suffered from various health problems, including obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and chronic constipation.
One of the factors that contributed to Elvis Presley’s constipation was his use of prescription drugs. Elvis Presley had been prescribed various medications for his pain, insomnia, and anxiety. Some of these drugs had side effects that slowed down his bowel movements and caused him to strain when passing stool. This led to the development of a condition called megacolon, which is an abnormal enlargement of the colon due to chronic constipation. Megacolon can cause symptoms such as abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, vomiting, or fecal impaction.
According to Dr. George Nichopoulos, Elvis Presley’s personal physician, Elvis Presley had a megacolon that was twice the normal size and weighed about nine pounds. He also had an impacted bowel that was eight to ten inches in diameter and stretched from his pelvis to his rib cage. Dr. Nichopoulos claimed that Elvis Presley’s colon was so obstructed that it could have caused his heart attack.
Therefore, both Lisa Marie Presley and Elvis Presley died of complications related to their digestive systems. They both had conditions that blocked their intestines and caused cardiac arrest. They both had underlying factors that contributed to their conditions, such as obesity, surgery, or medication. They both left behind a legacy of music and a grieving family.
Lisa Marie Presley’s cause of death was a small bowel obstruction, a rare and potentially fatal condition that blocks the passage of food and fluids through the small intestine. She developed this condition as a result of adhesions from weight-loss surgery that she underwent in 2016. Her death was similar to her father’s death, who also died of complications related to his digestive system. Lisa Marie Presley was the only child of rock ‘n’ roll legend Elvis Presley and followed in his footsteps as a singer and songwriter. She was loved by many and will be missed by her family and fans.