‘Friends’ Star Matthew Perry Died From “Acute Effects Of Ketamine,” According To LA Medical Examiner

Matthew Perry
Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for GQ

We now know the cause of death for Matthew Perry.

The Friends star tragically passed away on October 28 at the age of 54, after being found unresponsive in his hot tub at his Los Angeles home. Perry had reportedly just returned home from playing pickleball, and had been seen just hours earlier by his assistant.

It was reported at the time that no drugs were found at his house, and an autopsy was completed just two days later, with the results being deferred pending toxicology reports.

Well now we have our answers.

According to the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner’s Office, Perry’s death was caused by the “acute effects of ketamine,” which is commonly used as an antidepressant. Perry had reportedly been receiving ketamine injections every other day up until a few month before his death, when doctors determined that the frequent doses were no longer necessary.

It’s unknown how often Perry continued to receive the treatment, but his last injection was reported to be a week and a half before his death – though the ketamine from that dose would have been gone from his system by the time of his passing.

Several contributory factors were also listed by the medical examiner, including drowning, coronary artery disease, and the effects of buprenorphine, which is used to help wean addicts off of drugs.

And the report also noted that, while smoking was not a contributory factor to his death, Perry smoked two packs of cigarettes a day and had COPD/emphysema and diabetes.

Since his death, tributes to Perry have poured in from his Friends co-stars, who he worked with for years in his role as Chandler Bing.

Jennifer Aniston, Courtney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc and David Schwimmer released a joint statement after Perry’s passing:

“We are all so utterly devastated by the loss of Matthew. We were more than just cast mates. We are a family. There is so much to say, but right now we’re going to take a moment to grieve and process this unfathomable loss.

In time we will say more, as and when we are able. For now, our thoughts and our love are with Matty’s family, his friends, and everyone who loved him around the world.”

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock