Man Conscious During Apparent 23 Year Coma

Postby Marinepits » November 24th, 2009, 10:37 am

http://www.witn.com/home/headlines/72471922.html

A man who doctors thought was in a vegetative state for 23 years has begun communicating with the outside world again, and he's revealed a shocking truth.

A woman in Belgium says her son was in what some doctors thought was a vegetative state, but that he now says he was fully conscious for 23 years, and couldn't respond because he was paralyzed.

Doctors believed that a car accident left Rom Houben in a vegetative state, unable to understand what was going on around him. But after doctors at the University of Liege reevaluated his case, they discovered he was totally conscious. And during that time, he heard every word spoken near his hospital bed, but wasn't able to let people know.

Therapy has made him able to communicate with the help of a computer system. He has described the horror of screaming to doctors that he could hear them, without a sound ever coming out of his mouth.


:shock: :shock: :shock:

Reminds me of the Metallica video One.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EzgGTTtR ... re=related
*warning - some may find the subject matter and images graphic*
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Postby pitbullmamaliz » November 24th, 2009, 11:35 am

I can't even imagine.
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Postby TinaMartin » November 24th, 2009, 11:43 am

I probably would have gone crazy. Can you imagine some of the things he probably heard?
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Postby iluvk9 » November 24th, 2009, 12:46 pm

WOW. They say to be careful what you say when with people who are non-responsive. This sure proves it.

Or how about those stories of people supposedly under anesthesia and they aren't? :shock:
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Postby TinaMartin » November 24th, 2009, 1:09 pm

That happened to one of my co-workers not once but twice! That just scares me.
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Postby Marinepits » November 24th, 2009, 1:55 pm

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,576 ... test=faces

More info:

Man 'Trapped in Coma' for 23 Years Was Awake Whole Time

An engineering student thought to be in a coma for 23 years was actually conscious the whole time, it has emerged.

Rom Houben was misdiagnosed as being in a vegetative state after a car crash left him totally paralyzed.

But, in actuality, he was trapped in his own body the whole time with no way of letting friends and family know he could hear every word they were saying.

The 46-year-old, who can now tap out computerized messages and read books on a device above his hospital bed, has revealed: "I screamed, but there was nothing to hear.

"All that time I literally dreamed of a better life. Frustration is too small a word to describe what I felt," he said. "I shall never forget the day when they discovered what was truly wrong with me — it was my second birth. I want to read, talk with my friends via the computer and enjoy life now people know I am not dead."

His misdiagnosis was discovered by neurological expert, Dr. Steven Laureys, who fears there may be similar cases all over the world.

He looked at Houben's case again at the University of Liege, Belgium, using state-of-the-art imaging that showed the patient was aware of what was happening around him even though he had lost control of his body.

Laureys, who leads the Coma Science Group, was unavailable for comment when contacted by Sky News Online.

He told the Daily Telegraph: "In Germany alone each year some 100,000 people suffer from severe traumatic brain injury.

"About 20,000 are followed by a coma of three weeks or longer. Some of them die, others regain health," he continued. But an estimated 3,000 to 5,000 people a year, remain trapped in an intermediate stage: they go on living without ever come back again."


Whole Sky News article here: http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/World- ... Whole_Time
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