Five doctors agree with examiner in Scientology death - 1997-03-09
Five pathologists say it is clear from key lab results that Lisa McPherson was severely dehydrated when she died after a 17-day stay at a Church of Scientology retreat.
The Times interviewed the doctors after the much-publicized disagreement between the church and Pinellas-Pasco Medical Examiner Joan Wood over how McPherson died. None of the doctors were previously familiar with the case.
While many of their conclusions echo what Wood has said about McPherson's death, most of the doctors said they needed more information before they could say, as Wood did, that McPherson was unconscious for up to 48 hours before her death and did not have liquids for five to 10 days.
Two of the doctors questioned the Church of Scientology's statement that McPherson "suddenly took ill" and its suggestion that a staph infection was a major factor in her death.