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Mental Activity Seen in a Brain Gravely Injured
NY Times ^ | September 8, 2006 | BENEDICT CAREY

Posted on 09/07/2006 9:05:48 PM PDT by neverdem

A severely brain-damaged woman in an unresponsive, vegetative state showed clear signs on brain imaging tests that she was aware of herself and her surroundings, researchers are reporting today, in a finding that could have far-reaching consequences for how unconscious patients are cared for and how their conditions are diagnosed.

In response to commands, the patient’s brain flared with activity, lighting the same language and movement-planning regions that are active when healthy people hear the commands. Previous studies had found similar activity in partly conscious patients, who occasionally respond to commands, but never before in someone who was totally unresponsive.

Neurologists cautioned that the new report characterized only a single, perhaps unique case and that it did not mean that unresponsive brain-damaged people were more likely to recover or that treatment was possible. The woman in the study could not communicate with the researchers, and there was no way to know whether her subjective experience was anything like what healthy people call consciousness. The woman was injured in a traffic accident in England last year.

Yet the study so drastically contradicted the woman’s diagnosed condition that it exposed the limitations of standard methods of bedside diagnosis. And its findings are bound to raise hopes for tens of thousands of families caring for unresponsive, brain-damaged patients around the world — whether those hopes are justified or not, experts said.

“One always hesitates to make a lot out of a single case, but what this study shows me is that there may be more going on in terms of patients’ self-awareness than we can learn at the bedside,” said Dr. James Bernat, a professor of neurology at the Dartmouth Medical School, who was not involved in the study. “Even though we might assume some patients are not aware, I think we should...”

(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; News/Current Events; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS: brain; fmri; health; moralabsolutes; pvs; schiavo; science; terridailies; terrischiavo; vegetativestate
Detecting Awareness in the Vegetative State
1 posted on 09/07/2006 9:05:49 PM PDT by neverdem
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To: neverdem

Quick, someone call Terry Schiavo's parents and tell them there is hope. Oh wait...sorry...I forgot her husband already had starved to death.

PF


2 posted on 09/07/2006 9:13:42 PM PDT by PresidentFelon (Reuter's Reporter Adam Entous beats his mother)
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To: PresidentFelon

"had her starved to death"

sorry


3 posted on 09/07/2006 9:15:07 PM PDT by PresidentFelon (Reuter's Reporter Adam Entous beats his mother)
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To: PresidentFelon

Very sad, but true.


4 posted on 09/07/2006 9:15:45 PM PDT by gun_supporter
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To: 8mmMauser; floriduh voter

Ping!


5 posted on 09/07/2006 9:21:11 PM PDT by presently no screen name
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To: neverdem

---In response to commands, the patient’s brain flared with activity, lighting the same language and movement-planning regions that are active when healthy people hear the commands. ---

In other words, better than the average Senator.


6 posted on 09/07/2006 9:28:48 PM PDT by claudiustg (Iran delenda est.)
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To: neverdem

Brace yourself for the onslaught of the "I wouldn't want to live like that, so its OK to kill me and everyone else who are useless eaters, by the intentional starvation and dehydration" supporters crowd.

Palliative care of actual USA citizens is to be strictly rationed, but kidney dialysis for foreign medical patients illegally in our country, and intent upon acquiring by theft the best medical practices available on earth, is mandated.


7 posted on 09/07/2006 9:33:11 PM PDT by sarasmom (Lead, follow, or get out of the way .The "debate" ended on 91101 for serious adults.)
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To: neverdem

Thank you for posting this.


8 posted on 09/07/2006 9:40:59 PM PDT by ConservativeMind
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To: neverdem

I think Howeird Dean and John F'kn Kerry has proven this.


9 posted on 09/07/2006 9:45:48 PM PDT by AZRepublican ("The degree in which a measure is necessary can never be a test of the legal right to adopt it.")
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To: neverdem
This is mportant work. It could help yield information useful to healthy people as well. There's nothing quite like subtraction by which to distinguish evidences of systems that are otherwise obscured by noise.
10 posted on 09/07/2006 9:52:12 PM PDT by Carry_Okie (Angelides v. Schwarzenegger is like deciding between ebola and cancer, respectively.)
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To: El Gato; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Robert A. Cook, PE; lepton; LadyDoc; jb6; tiamat; PGalt; Dianna; ...
Adult Stem Cell Research Provides Help for Children With Brain Tumors

Scientists Tie About 200 Genes to Cancer (just breast & colorectal)

FReepmail me if you want on or off my health and science ping list.

11 posted on 09/07/2006 9:52:49 PM PDT by neverdem (May you be in heaven a half hour before the devil knows that you're dead.)
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To: Avoiding_Sulla
You may want to chase this one down.
12 posted on 09/07/2006 9:53:00 PM PDT by Carry_Okie (Angelides v. Schwarzenegger is like deciding between ebola and cancer, respectively.)
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To: neverdem

Great post neverdem!

life


13 posted on 09/07/2006 10:03:35 PM PDT by PGalt
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To: neverdem

the organ donation organizations are now going for those who still have some brain function to bolster "donations". They are trying to pare down the number of doctors that have to declare brain death, 1 instead of 2, and lower the threshold for what constitutes "brain death" or now donations collected from those that still have brain function, they just can't "breathe" on their own and may not be able to.

my dad was declared brain dead without an eeg scan and when I repeatedly asked to see the cat scan supposedly showing "brain death", they refused.


14 posted on 09/07/2006 10:10:02 PM PDT by machogirl
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To: wagglebee

'Nother article about this.


15 posted on 09/07/2006 10:16:10 PM PDT by little jeremiah
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To: neverdem
"And when the researchers asked the woman to imagine playing tennis or walking through her house, they saw peaks of activity in the premotor cortex and other areas of her brain that mimicked those of healthy volunteers."

Now have her think of working an assembly line without using her physical body. We will become robots without bodies.

16 posted on 09/07/2006 10:17:33 PM PDT by endthematrix (None dare call it ISLAMOFACISM!)
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To: neverdem

my nephew was in a wreck, sever brain damage, they said he would never come out of the induced coma and he would never come out of the induced paralisis, they also tried to get my Sis to pull his life support, threw him in a nursing home, after 5-6 months of fighting to get him home, my Sis had all Medications stopped, other than vitamins and feeding tube.This was 3 yrs ago this month. He is now getting biofeedback therapy, combing his own hair, putting on his own shirts, brushing his own teeth, and last weekend (first time in 3 yrs)he stood with his Wife and Father in the Church service. God always has a way of healing those who have FAITH. Doctors on the other hand rely on insurance and synthetic drugs to keep you medicated, sedated and medicare imprisioned. Life is Great, Although he still has a feeding tube, He is able to interact and watch his 2 beautiful daughters grow and laugh and love. Never give up hope, Miracles happen everyday.


17 posted on 09/07/2006 10:19:41 PM PDT by glymers
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To: neverdem

neverdem......I don't respond much, but you sure post some extremely interesting stuff.

Thank you....


18 posted on 09/07/2006 10:32:55 PM PDT by Gator113
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To: glymers

Thank you for sharing your heartfelt and personal experience. I agree with you regarding the power of God...I am one of his miracles. But, I also know many very intelligent and dedicated doctors. that work very hard to help people, heal those in need and save lives.

There is good and bad, in EVERY walk in life.........


19 posted on 09/07/2006 10:42:45 PM PDT by Gator113
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To: machogirl
my dad was declared brain dead without an eeg scan and when I repeatedly asked to see the cat scan supposedly showing "brain death", they refused.

In that case, I would be talking to an attorney. "They" can't refuse to provide medical records to immediate family members.

20 posted on 09/08/2006 2:14:39 AM PDT by LaineyDee (Don't mess with Texas wimmen!)
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To: presently no screen name; neverdem
Pinged from Terri SEPTEMBER Dailies

8mm

21 posted on 09/08/2006 4:58:23 AM PDT by 8mmMauser (Jezu ufam Tobie...Jesus I trust in Thee)
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To: Carry_Okie
It could help yield information useful to healthy people as well. There's nothing quite like subtraction by which to distinguish evidences of systems that are otherwise obscured by noise.

I agree.

Doctors who believe in killing handicapped patients make few great discoveries.

They are merely executioners.

22 posted on 09/08/2006 4:58:48 AM PDT by syriacus (Why wasn't each home in New Orleans required to have an inflatable life boat?)
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To: neverdem; All

Thanks to all contributors to this thread. BTTT.

life


23 posted on 09/08/2006 6:31:30 AM PDT by PGalt
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To: PGalt

Good thread.


24 posted on 09/08/2006 6:47:47 AM PDT by Iwo Jima ("Close the border. Then we'll talk.")
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To: Iwo Jima

http://terrisfight.org/news.php?id=165


25 posted on 09/08/2006 9:00:25 PM PDT by gusopol3
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To: neverdem

bump!


26 posted on 09/08/2006 9:38:28 PM PDT by sunshine state
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To: LaineyDee

tried, there was fraud involved all around, including the hospital, the funeral home manager stepped up and signed and afidavit, still we did not get any action on my state complaints, they were found guilty, but there is not any regulation, so they get off scott free, I keep on plugging, I did get legislation passed though, it will help protect others that want to donate from their loved ones being scavenged without their permission.


27 posted on 09/09/2006 12:31:03 AM PDT by machogirl
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To: machogirl

Since hospitals have federal mandates in place which allow charts to be obtained by immediate family from the medical records department (this isn't a local issue) you should write to the AG in your state and if that doesn't work, go to your Senator, the US AG etc.... but a good attorney would know that. It's a FOIA issue. Good luck.


28 posted on 09/09/2006 5:51:48 AM PDT by LaineyDee (Don't mess with Texas wimmen!)
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To: neverdem

I'm glad you posted this, as I was about to. Very interesting article, as it clearly lays the groundwork that there *might* have been life after all in Terri Schiavo. Of course, the NYT couldn't run that story as-is so they had to pepper this article with all kinds of "BUT, you know, this didn't apply to Terri Schiavo" BS.

Truth is, no one really knows what goes in in an injured brain so we HAVE to err on the side of life.


29 posted on 09/11/2006 8:19:04 PM PDT by jddqr
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