Unformatted text preview: ss. Disorders of Consciousness!
Terri Schiavo! Terri spent 15 years in a “persistent
vegetative state”! To the left are CT scans taken before her death.
Neuropathologists found during an autopsy after
her death that there was virtually no cerebal
Can tell when someone has absolutely no conscious awareness whatsoever -- so if they have a brain
injury that disrupts all cortical processing. This was the issue w/ Terry Schiavo.
She was in a vegetative state for 15 years & husband wanted to disconnect her from life support, and her
parents wanted to keep her alive. Vegetative State: ! Disorders of Consciousness! Owen, 2008! “A diagnosis of vegetative state is only made after repeated examinations that have yielded no evidence whatsoever of
sustained, reproducible, purposeful, or voluntary behavioral response to visual, auditory, tactile, or noxious stimuli. Enough brain
activity to keep
There must also be no evidence of language comprehension or expression, although there is generally sufﬁciently them alive w/
preserved hypothalamic and brain-stem autonomic functions to permit survival with medical care. Unlike patients in ventalators,
feeding tubes, etc.
coma, the vegetative state is characterized by cycles of eye closure and eye opening giving the appearance of a sleep/
wake cycle. It is this waking pattern, combined with the wide range of reﬂexive responses that are often observed in
vegetative patients, that can result in this activity being misinterpreted as evidence of volitional behavior and even the
return of conscious awareness.”! Minimally Conscious State: ! In this case,
some level of
conciousnes “The minimally conscious state is a relatively new diagnostic category and describes patients who show limited but
clear evidence of awareness. Some vegetative patients pass through the minimally conscious state on the road to further
recovery, while others remain minimally conscious indeﬁnitely. Like vegetative patients, cycles of eye closure...
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- Fall '11
- Consciousness, Vegetative state, Minimally conscious state