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Steve Jobs' cause of death officially listed as respiratory arrest

post #1 of 67
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Apple co-founder Steve Jobs died of respiratory arrest caused by a pancreatic tumor, according to a copy of his death certificate.

Jobs, 56, passed away at around 3 p.m. on Oct. 5th, according to the certificate.

The document, issued Monday by The Santa Clara County Public Health Department, listed the immediate cause of death as respiratory arrest, with "metastatic pancreas neuroendocrine tumor" as an underlying cause.Â*It said Jobs had the tumor for the past five years.

In 2003, Jobs was diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer call islet cell carcinoma. He underwent successful surgery to have it removed, but his death certificate reveals that a secondary metastatic tumor developed, prompting a liver transplant in 2009.

The Apple co-founder took two leaves of absence over the next two years and ultimately resigned as CEO on Aug. 24.

A pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor, also called islet cell carcinoma, is a rare form of cancer that is most likely to be passed on through genetics, as there are few known risk factors that lead to this type of illness.

Neuroendocrine tumors, which grow at a relatively slow rate, can be surgically removed. These tumors can release hormones prior to removal, which can cause recurrence or spreading of the cancer.

Only five percent of pancreatic tumors arise from islet cells, with some being "functional," meaning that they release an excess of hormones that can lead to hormone-related symptoms. In 2009, Jobs revealed that he was being treated for a hormone imbalance.



The disease is typically treated with surgery, followed by liver-directed therapy if metastases develop there, and while Jobs did undergo a liver transplant,Â* the cancer returned.Â* Â*

On his death certificate, Jobs' occupation is listed as Âentrepreneur in the Âhigh tech industry. The name of the person who prepared the certificate is reportedly blacked out.

Apple informed the Palo Alto, Calif. police a few days before Jobs' death that the former CEO was expected to die, after being asked to do so by the department, in case patrols were needed to handle the possibility of large crowds of mourners gathering at his house.

Jobs was buried in a non-denominational cemetery in Santa Clara County on Oct .7.
post #2 of 67
*bows head in silence*

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post #3 of 67
Often with a terminal cancer patient it's the morphine administered for pain that actually causes the respiratory arrest and death. The patient is asleep/unconscious and does not suffer.
post #4 of 67
He accomplished more than most people would in a lifetime, but his life's work seems incomplete. He was taken too soon from us.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

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post #5 of 67
Still can't believe that he's no longer with us
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A reputation is not built upon the restful domain of one's comfort zone; it is made out of stalwart exposition of your core beliefs, for all challenges to disprove them as irrelevant hubris.- Berp...
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post #6 of 67
... Not to sound stupid, but... I thought he had the tumor removed...well the pancreatic cancer that is... I assume it sounds like came back? Steve, I miss yah man. You didn't know me personally... but you knew exactly what I wanted. I thank you so much for making my life so much easier and enjoyable.
post #7 of 67
I have never felt so sad about someone I never met. Suprise the heck out of me.
post #8 of 67
The official cause of death is the immediate cause, not the underlying cause.

My mother died in 2009 of a broken neck, a broken back, both inoperable, spinal degenerative arthritis, three major nerves pinched in her back, rheumatoid arthritis, bronchitis, pneumonia, fluid accumulating in her legs, she had stents in her legs to prevent amputation, she had had lung and breast cancer, her spine had been rebuilt surgically two times. She tachycardia. She had artificial hips, and she was allergic to the pain killers and antibiotics. She died in my house. The official cause of death in lay terms: she stopped breathing.

My father lost the ability to absorb nutrients, probably as a consequence of having polio as a boy. He wasted away until he was a skin covered skeleton. He died in my house in 2011, and in fact, I discovered the body. Cause of death: adult failure to thrive, whatever that is.

Again, the official cause of death is the immediate cause, not the underlying cause.
post #9 of 67
Does that mean he suffocated? I hope not. That's a horrible way to go :-(
post #10 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

He accomplished more than most people would in a lifetime, but his life's work seems incomplete. He was taken too soon from us.

He accomplished more in one life than most people will ever do in several lifetimes.

I truly think that even if he were to live to a ripe age of 90+, he'd still be taken from us too soon. I does have me pause to reflect what other things Steve Jobs would have accomplished and presented to the world if he lived to be in his 90's. Such a huge blow. At least, he'll be always the bar that is set for others attempt.
post #11 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbsoluteDesignz View Post

Does that mean he suffocated? I hope not. That's a horrible way to go :-(

Respiratory arrest is the cessation of breathing. It is a medical emergency and it usually is related to or coincides with a cardiac arrest. Causes include opiate overdose, head injury, anaesthesia, tetanus, or drowning.
post #12 of 67
Does anyone have any insight regarding Steve's diet? It's my understanding that he was a Pescetarian (No meat except fish) when he was younger, but did that change as he aged/got sick?

If not, perhaps it'll be discussed in the bio.
post #13 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by lightstriker View Post

I have never felt so sad about someone I never met. Suprise the heck out of me.

I agree; never felt anything like it.
post #14 of 67
My mother was diagnosed with Pancreatic cancer when she was 49. They did a "whipple" procedure and she was cancer free for a year. Then almost a year to the day, she started getting tumors all over her body. She died 18 months after her diagnosis at age 51. It's a very horrible cancer. I'm glad Steve got to last as long as he did.
post #15 of 67
This is much less "news" for me as it is just grim rubbernecking. The man has died. Please let him and his family be.

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post #16 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbsoluteDesignz View Post

Does that mean he suffocated? I hope not. That's a horrible way to go :-(

I'm not a doctor, but no I don't think he "suffocated' - merely that he stopped breathing. I don't mean to sound morbid, but it sounds like he was surrounded by his family, who said that he passed away peacefully - rather than a resuscitation-type situation. In addition, they've known since February that he was only his final leg, and for at least a few days beforehand, I think, that it was really imminent. He probably slipped away peacefully and his "respiration arrested. "
post #17 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Underhill View Post

Still can't believe that he's no longer with us

Ditto. I've already had to remind myself several times that, no, he will not be doing any more keynotes. He's gone.

Having said that, I think it'd be really cool if he was the one that gives me a tour of heaven when I die and tells me how insanely awesome all of the features of heaven are. Who better to hype the after life than Steve Jobs?
post #18 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by ArchAngel21x View Post

Having said that, I think it'd be really cool if he was the one that gives me a tour of heaven when I die and tells me how insanely awesome all of the features of heaven are. Who better to hype the after life than Steve Jobs?

Buddhists don't believe in that kind of Heaven.
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post #19 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by josephwinters View Post

... Not to sound stupid, but... I thought he had the tumor removed...well the pancreatic cancer that is... I assume it sounds like came back? Steve, I miss yah man. You didn't know me personally... but you knew exactly what I wanted. I thank you so much for making my life so much easier and enjoyable.

Unfortunately, the certificate said "metastatic tumor." It came back. He must have been fighting it for the last year or so.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #20 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

He accomplished more than most people would in a lifetime, but his life's work seems incomplete. He was taken too soon from us.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Underhill View Post

Still can't believe that he's no longer with us

Quote:
Originally Posted by lightstriker View Post

I have never felt so sad about someone I never met. Suprise the heck out of me.

Steve was robbed of decades of productive life and his family lost decades of a husband and father. It was way too soon. I am so sad still and think about Steve Jobs all day every day. I have followed his life since 1978. I can't believe he is gone.

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post #21 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by gmcalpin View Post

Buddhists don't believe in that kind of Heaven.

Buddhists have a sense of humor.
post #22 of 67
Pancreatic cancer grows very slowly, I understand. It usually lies undiscovered in the body for 20 years before it gives a symptom. By then it is usually too late. In the future, we will detect these cancers while they are still harmless and simply remove them.
post #23 of 67
Reading, hearing, seeing, sensing the genuine sadness and deep melancholy from millions of perfect strangers to Steve Jobs this past week, I have tried to imagine -- but cannot begin to remotely fathom -- what his wife children must be going through.

I can only hope they feel the world's unqualified goodwill and support.
post #24 of 67
By metastasizing to the spinal column around the upper neck, the tumor could stop him from breathing.

It goes downhill very quickly when the tumor spreads to the spinal cord.



Sad.
post #25 of 67
I hope he truly finds peace and tranquility in the after life.

But he's battling with cancer is a truly sad story to hear. As he have tried so hard and cried to tears when he heard it was benign for the first time.


andrewcslaughter@linuxmirroreast.com
post #26 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post

By metastasizing to the spinal column around the upper neck, the tumor could stop him from breathing.

It goes downhill very quickly when the tumor spreads to the spinal cord.



Sad.

Can I respectfully suggest we don't speculate in this situation? You know how fast internet rumors travel
post #27 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameskatt2 View Post

Looks like it got to his spinal cord.

No. He died peacefully.
post #28 of 67
Again! This is right up there with Hypoxia (The shortage of life giving oxygen in the cells.) 'Tis a scourge upon human kind I tell you! Something must be done about respiratory arrest and cardiac arrest.
post #29 of 67
Jesus guys, I had to create an account just to respond to you guys.

Look, EVERYONE dies of respiratory arrest. Everyone. It's the thing that kills you. Your respiratory system stops. It arrests.
The cause of Steve's arrest was pancreatic cancer. It's exactly the same thing that killed my father-in-law. It does not take 20 years to develop, and in Steve's case it did not spread to his Goddamned spinal column and stop him from breathing.
He died from cancer. Period.

Stop making shit up. You're embarrassing us.
post #30 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpsro View Post

Often with a terminal cancer patient it's the morphine administered for pain that actually causes the respiratory arrest and death. The patient is asleep/unconscious and does not suffer.

Dilaudid. Not morphine as such.
post #31 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike052011 View Post

Respiratory arrest is the cessation of breathing. It is a medical emergency and it usually is related to or coincides with a cardiac arrest. Causes include opiate overdose, head injury, anaesthesia, tetanus, or drowning.

Mike this is how many end stage cancer patients pass. Often the end stages of the disease are so painful that patients are given a self-administer morphine drip. Essentially, the morphine kills them; they overdose and stop breathing - they just drift away.

In real terms, the pain relief hastens their death. But for terminal patients, it allows those final days to be spent in relative peace and with little pain, as opposed to dying in great agony. For terminal patients, this is the common standard of care, because it allows their death to be less horrifying.
post #32 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

This is much less "news" for me as it is just grim rubbernecking. The man has died. Please let him and his family be.

Amen.

Please, folks. Stop the rubbernecking. Can't you have ANY decency?
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post #33 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

Amen.

Please, folks. Stop the rubbernecking. Can't you have ANY decency?

How is discussing this topic, which is based on public filings about a very important person's final hour, 'rubbernecking'? More so, how is it in any way harming his family? DO you think they are unaware of Steve's last hours?

Rubbernecking is when people slow down on a freeway to try and catch a glimpse of some accident. Discussing why Steve passed away, even if a bit morbid, is not disrespectful. In my opinion, you need to remember that lots of people cared about Steve - even those who never met him. This is a part of people coming to grips with a loss - it is in some ways a form of grieving.

Nobody is camping out in front of his house pestering his family about the details of Steve's last days - they are just talking about it in a random internet forum as they try to work through his death.

Instead of questioning their decency, why not have some compassion?
post #34 of 67
6 hours and they still haven't corrected the 'Steve Job' typo. AI's proof reading just never ceases to let it down.
post #35 of 67
Let it go.

Journalism died in the Nineties.
post #36 of 67
Buddhism or religion aside
It's rare to see someone have this effect on so many people
I'm Muslim, and I find it hard to believe that someone who was loved by so many people
From so many religions and regions is not in the big mans good books
I mean the guy must have been doing something right to be loved by so many people
And I think he's probably pretty happy where he is right now
If he's into awesome, I'm pretty sure his current location satisfies that
post #37 of 67
None of us have stopped to think about the sheer volume of great stuff he produced during the last two years of his life, years that were filled with the kind of pain and torment that would make most of us crumple to the ground.

Did anyone else see the tribute Jim Cramer gave him on Mad Money? I was surprised. Never liked him, but I had to say he summed up Steve's impact the best of anything I've heard yet.
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What is really factored into the price is a kind of perpetual sense of disbelief that any company could be as good as Apple is. ~Retrogusto
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post #38 of 67
Respiratory arrest implies a medical emergency due to the cessation of breathing. It often coincides with cardiac arrest. I am a registered nurse and have worked in hospice (palliative) care for a lot of my career. Most people don't die from their primary diagnosis. The death certificates I usually co-sign on list pneumonia or respiratory failure on them as the direct cause of death. In this particular case, I assume that Steve Jobs had one of the best hospice companies (if not a physician directly caring for him) during his decline into death. During this time, patients are given an opiate, usually sublingual morphine or, if the healthcare provider has access, IV morphine. Although morphine is used in the treatment of severe pain, one of it's side effects include respiratory depression. Respiratory depression sounds scary, but during an active death process, it can greatly improve the quality of someone's life. Managing a person in the hospital is a whole different story than managing a person in their home. This combined with other basic cares can provide comfort while the patient's breaths are slowing and becoming shallow. They usually drift into an unconscious state while the morphine is being administered. To assure comfort, the medication is continued until the time of death. Palliative care is an interesting subject. If any of you get bored while waiting for your iPhones this week, research it. Psychologically, Mr. Jobs died due to lack of oxygen, but rest assured, he was comfortable when it happened.

Reference:
DiPiro, J. T. (2011). Pharmacotherapy: a pathophysiologic approaoach (8th ed.). USA: McGraw-Hill Medical.
post #39 of 67
He's gone lets leave his memory in peace. He would want us to move on. Cant we just move on. Please.
An Apple man since 1977
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An Apple man since 1977
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post #40 of 67
Medicine seems so close to reducing cancer to an annoying but not fatal chronic illness, or even curing some forms outright, but sadly it's just not there yet.

We'll never know what amazing things he would have done if he had survived.
Farewell Steve, thanks for everything, and God bless.
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