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Jackson doctors 'competed' to treat pop star: ex-wife

15 august 2013, 18:12
0
Debbie Rowe, ex-wife of singer Michael Jackson. ©REUTERS/FRED PROUSER
Debbie Rowe, ex-wife of singer Michael Jackson. ©REUTERS/FRED PROUSER
Various doctors were "competing" to treat Michael Jackson, each offering stronger and stronger painkillers long before his 2009 death, the King of Pop's ex-wife testified Wednesday, AFP reports.

Debbie Rowe, the 54-year-old mother of Jackson's two older children, told jurors that the pop star had a "very low tolerance for pain" and that over the years doctors gladly prescribed potent drugs like Demerol, Dilaudid, Oxycodone and Vicodin.

"His fear of pain was incredible," Rowe said during the 16th week of the trial, in which Jackson's 83-year-old mother Katherine is suing tour promoter AEG Live.

The family matriarch is the main plaintiff in the multi-million dollar case against AEG Live, which she accuses of negligently retaining doctor Conrad Murray to look after Jackson as he rehearsed in Los Angeles for his "This is It" comeback tour.

Murray was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in 2011 over Jackson's death on June 25, 2009 from an overdose of the surgical anesthetic propofol, administered to help the singer cope with chronic insomnia.

Rowe, who was married to Jackson from 1996-1999, testified on behalf of AEG, which argues he was secretly addicted to drugs and responsible for his own death.

She argued Jackson's history of chronic pain, and of doctors happily prescribing ever-stronger drugs, long predated his time with Murray.

Rowe said doctors took advantage of Jackson, prescribing narcotics to treat everything from acne to a burn on his scalp suffered during the filming of a Pepsi commercial in 1983.

Referring to the doctors as "these idiots," Rowe stated: "You don't call someone and say let's take Dilaudid instead of Aspirin."

Rowe met Jackson when she was working as a nurse for dermatologist Arnold Klein, who was then treating the singer for acne.

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