Cause of CSU student's death still pending

benw@ledger-enquirer.comApril 30, 2013 

A cause of death for a Columbus State University student is pending results of a toxicology report, the Muscogee County Coroner’s office said today.

Giselle Ortiz, a 19-year-old music student, died Saturday at The Medical Center after she was stricken at her downtown dorm on 10th Street.

Muscogee County Coroner Buddy Bryan said he was notified about the pending results at 5:30 p.m. Monday after an autopsy was performed at the crime lab in Atlanta. Toxicology checks blood, urine or saliva for the presence of drugs or chemicals.

In addition to toxicology, officials will look at histology, which focuses on the minute structure of cells, tissues and organs in relation to their function. Results could take four to months to determine a cause of death.

While the cause of death is pending, the coroner said Ortiz was taking medication for lupus. The disease affects the immune system in fighting off viruses, bacteria and other germs.

There was no foul play suspected or chemicals involved in the student’s death, Bryan said. Officials at the university, the public safety department and the student's parents have been notified about the pending results.

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