Autopsy Inconclusive on French Woman Denied Euthanasia

The autopsy conducted on Chantal Sebire – who was found dead Wednesday after she sparked an international debate on euthanasia – has failed to give a cause of death; it is being reported by a cable news network.

Sebire, 52, suffered from disfiguring facial tumors and begged for the right to die. A Dijon, France prosecutor said Friday it is still unclear whether Sebire died of natural or unnatural causes.

The investigation into Sebire’s death will continue and more tests will be done, the prosecutor said, but results will not be immediate.

Sebire had esthesioneuroblastoma, a rare form of cancer that produced tumors in her nasal passages and sinuses; her nose and eyes had bulged and distorted in recent years.

Sebire described the pain as “excruciating” and said painkillers did not work.

In France, assisted suicide is illegal; the law only allows for passive euthanasia, which means if a person is in a coma the feeding tubes may be removed.

Sebire had taken her case to court and was turned down Monday.

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