Matthew Perry's ex calls for investigation into doctors after Friends star dies from acute effects of ketamine

17 December 2023, 07:00

Matthew Perry died in October
Matthew Perry died in October. Picture: Alamy/Getty

By Kit Heren

The ex-girlfriend of former Friends star Matthew Perry has called for an investigation into his doctors, after it emerged that he died from the acute effects of ketamine.

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Perry, best known for his role as Chandler Bing in US sitcom Friends, was found dead at his home aged 54 on October 28.

Also contributing to Perry's death were drowning, coronary artery disease, and effects of buprenorphine - a medicine used to treat opioid use disorder - a report by the County of Los Angeles Department of Medical Examiner said.

Perry had been receiving ketamine infusion treatment for depression and anxiety, but the report said that the ketamine found in his system could not have come from that.

Ketamine's half-life is three-four hours, and Perry's last treatment session had been a week and a half earlier.

Read more: Matthew Perry was 'happy' the day he died, Jennifer Aniston says, as she reveals she spoke to Friends co-star that day

Read more: Friends cast ‘in talks’ to reunite and share ‘personal memories’ of Matthew Perry at major awards ceremony

Matthew Perry
Matthew Perry. Picture: Getty

Perry's former girlfriend Kayti Edwards called for an investigation.

She told the Sun: "I’m pretty sure that in Matthew’s brain ketamine infusions at a doctor’s would count as still being sober.

"In his brain it’s not the same as going on the street to buy crack or heroin.

Friends actors Matthew Perry and Lisa Kudrow attend the 12th Annual Triumph for Teens Awards Gala, June 15th, 2015 at the Montage Beverly Hills in Beverly Hills, California.
Friends actors Matthew Perry and Lisa Kudrow attend the 12th Annual Triumph for Teens Awards Gala, June 15th, 2015 at the Montage Beverly Hills in Beverly Hills, California. Picture: Alamy

"That probably was the stepping stone for him to go back to doing drugs.

"I think the doctors who had been working with Matthew should be investigated.

"I’m pretty sure he would have had an in with a doctor".

Matthew Perry is pictured in 2004 film The Whole Ten Yards
Matthew Perry is pictured in 2004 film The Whole Ten Yards. Picture: Alamy

Perry was found in his swimming pool - following reports of a cardiac arrest - and was pronounced dead by paramedics at the scene.

LA medical examiners carried out a post-mortem on the sitcom star following his death on October 29.

Perry's funeral was held in November and was attended by fellow Friends stars Jennifer Aniston, Matt LeBlanc, Courtney Cox, David Schwimmer, and Lisa Kudrow.

Following his death in October, fans and friends paid tribute to Perry, with many laying flowers outside the iconic Friends apartment building in New York.

Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer in the Friends Reunion Special in 2021. Credit: HBO Max / Warner Bros. Television / Album
Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer in the Friends Reunion Special in 2021. Credit: HBO Max / Warner Bros. Television / Album. Picture: Alamy

Perry became a worldwide star after appearing in Friends, and was nominated for an Emmy. He starred in all 234 episodes across 10 seasons from 1994-2004.

He joined his fellow co-stars for a reunion special hosted by James Corden in 2021.

His memoir, Friends, Lovers and the Big Terrible Thing, was released towards the end of last year.

Perry detailed in the book that he spent weeks in a coma due to drug abuse. He also revealed that he struggled with drug and alcohol addiction while he starred on Friends.

"I loved everything about the show but I was struggling with my addictions which only added to my sense of shame," he wrote.

"If I didn't get the laugh I was supposed to get I would freak out. I felt that every single night. This pressure left me in a bad place. I also knew of the six people making that show, only one of them was sick."

MATTHEW PERRY pictured in film 17 Again, 2009
MATTHEW PERRY pictured in film 17 Again, 2009. Picture: Alamy

Earlier this week, Friends co-star Jennifer Aniston revealed she had been messaging Perry on the morning of his death.

Aniston said Perry, who played Chandler on the beloved US sitcom, was "healthy" before his death.

She told Variety: "He had quit smoking. He was getting in shape. He was happy — that’s all I know. I was literally texting with him that morning, funny Matty.

"He was not in pain. He wasn’t struggling. He was happy."Aniston, who played Rachel, said she wanted the public to know that Perry had been doing well before he died.

She said: "He worked so hard. He really was dealt a tough one. I miss him dearly. We all do. Boy, he made us laugh really hard."

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