Skip to comments.No Explanation for Firefighter's Recovery
Posted on 05/03/2005 5:56:00 PM PDT by kingattax
No Explanation for NYC Firefighter's Stunning Recovery From Brain Injury Nearly 10 Years' Later ===========================================================
NEW YORK May 3, 2005 Nearly 10 years after a brain injury left a firefighter virtually mute, he suddenly started talking to his wife and sons last weekend. A couple of years ago, it happened with a severely injured car accident victim who'd spent 19 years in silence.
And before that, a paralyzed policeman whose brain had been damaged in a shooting suddenly regained his speech after eight years. Normally, brain-injured patients who get better do so within the first five years, especially in the first two years, and usually the change is gradual.
So what's the explanation for these reports of long-delayed, sudden improvement?
"We really don't know for sure what's going on," says Anthony Stringer, director of neuropsychology in the department of rehabilitation medicine at the Emory University School of Medicine.
While the answer might involve some long-delayed change in the brain, experts said Tuesday, a sudden improvement might also result from a far different cause, like a change in medications or treatment of some other medical condition that's been suppressing mental function.
Experts say such cases are so rare they don't have much to study, and note that news accounts usually leave out the details needed to evaluate possible causes.
The latest case involves firefighter Donald Herbert, 43, who has lived at a nursing home in suburban Buffalo, for more than seven years.
In December 1995, the roof of a burning home collapsed on him. He went without oxygen for several minutes before he was rescued, and he ended up blind with little, if any, memory. He was largely mute and showed little awareness of his surroundings.
But last Saturday, he suddenly asked for his wife, Linda. And over the next 14 hours, until he fell asleep early Sunday morning, he chatted with her, his four sons and other family and friends, catching up on what he'd missed.
"How long have I been away?" Herbert had asked.
"We told him almost 10 years," said his uncle, Simon Manka. "He thought it was only three months."
I was going to say - the word "miracle" comes to mind.
Fortunately his life had not been labeled 'not worth living' at any time in the past 10 years.
A wonderful story !
Has he answered yet? LOL the chicken ****
I have the explanation for the fire fighter's recovery. He wasn't married to someone like Michael Schiavo and he his fate wasn't decided by Judge Dread.
lol...not yet. someone like him gives chicken sh** a bad name
Good thing he didn't live in Florida. . .
you are correct, sir
B-b-but...I thought they said that people's brains turn to jelly after so long. . .hmmmmm.
This is wonderful news and I'm very happy for the man and his family.
Explanation...Act of God outside the day to day operation
of average reality.