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Tue Nov 13, 2012, 05:51 AM

Brain-damaged man 'aware' of scientists' questions

Last edited Tue Nov 13, 2012, 06:41 AM - Edit history (1)

A crash victim thought to have been in a vegetative state for more than a decade has used the power of thought to tell scientists he is not in pain.

Canadian Scott Routley, from London, Ontario, communicated with researchers via a brain scan, proving that he is conscious and aware. It is the first time such a severely brain-damaged patient has been able to provide clinically relevant information to doctors.

British neuroscientist Professor Adrian Owen, who leads the research team at the Brain and Mind Institute of Western Ontario, said: "Scott has been able to show he has a conscious, thinking mind. We have scanned him several times and his pattern of brain activity shows he is clearly choosing to answer our questions. We believe he knows who and where he is."

>

He said the breakthrough could lead to improvements in the treatment of severely brain-damaged patients who cannot move or speak.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2012/nov/13/brain-damaged-man-aware

Vegetative patient Scott Routley says 'I'm not in pain'

A Canadian man who was believed to have been in a vegetative state for more than a decade, has been able to tell scientists that he is not in any pain.

It's the first time an uncommunicative, severely brain-injured patient has been able to give answers clinically relevant to their care.

Scott Routley, 39, was asked questions while having his brain activity scanned in an fMRI machine.

His doctor says the discovery means medical textbooks will need rewriting.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-20268044

32 replies, 4366 views

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Arrow 32 replies Author Time Post
Reply Brain-damaged man 'aware' of scientists' questions (Original post)
dipsydoodle Nov 2012 OP
xchrom Nov 2012 #1
longship Nov 2012 #2
NYC Liberal Nov 2012 #3
DippyDem Nov 2012 #4
Godot51 Nov 2012 #5
FreeBC Nov 2012 #29
Shankapotomus Nov 2012 #6
ehrnst Nov 2012 #7
caseymoz Nov 2012 #8
Posteritatis Nov 2012 #13
caseymoz Nov 2012 #22
roguevalley Nov 2012 #9
List left Nov 2012 #10
ret5hd Nov 2012 #11
roguevalley Nov 2012 #19
roguevalley Nov 2012 #18
roguevalley Nov 2012 #21
jeff47 Nov 2012 #23
roguevalley Nov 2012 #24
jeff47 Nov 2012 #25
d_r Nov 2012 #26
melody Nov 2012 #28
Thor_MN Nov 2012 #30
JDPriestly Nov 2012 #31
roguevalley Nov 2012 #32
Posteritatis Nov 2012 #14
roguevalley Nov 2012 #17
DavidDvorkin Nov 2012 #15
roguevalley Nov 2012 #16
FiveGoodMen Nov 2012 #20
longship Nov 2012 #27
Odin2005 Nov 2012 #12

Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 06:18 AM

1. du rec. nt

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:15 AM

2. So this guy's locked-in?

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:26 AM

3. Here's a video:

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:30 AM

4. Shades of the walking dead? Wow! nt

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 07:55 AM

5. Not unlike Joe...

... in "Johnny Got His Gun".

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Response to Godot51 (Reply #5)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 04:39 PM

29. Exactly what I thought

 

only my point of reference was the Metallica video.

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:00 AM

6. I thought this thread

was going to be about Bill O'Reilly.

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Response to Shankapotomus (Reply #6)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:03 AM

7. Where are the DUZYs when you need them!! (nt)

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 08:16 AM

8. This has hoax written all over it.


There was a similar story a couple years ago, although the method of communication wasn't a fMRI. I think it actually had one of the scientists ending by saying the textbooks will need rewriting. They didn't. The results were unrepeatable.

I would wait until this experiment is repeated. There's a history of communication breakthroughs with comatose and autistics that haven't panned out.

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Response to caseymoz (Reply #8)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:27 PM

13. Did you really just equate locked-in and autism? (nt)

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #13)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:43 PM

22. No, "comatose and autistics" is not an equation.


No, "comatose and autistics" is not an equation.

Saying them together does not make them equal, it means there were hoax cases for one and a hoax the other, the commonality between them being blocked communication. Oh, and by putting "and" between two occurrences of the word hoax, I'm not saying all hoaxes are equal either.

Did you misread that by accident or on purpose?

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:06 AM

9. neurosurgeons are beginning to think our consciousness

Resides outside our body with our brain as conduit.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #9)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 10:47 AM

10. link or source please...nt

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Response to List left (Reply #10)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:32 AM

11. yeah, i'm waiting for that too.

which rhymes with woo.

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Response to ret5hd (Reply #11)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 06:56 PM

19. sad

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Response to List left (Reply #10)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 06:55 PM

18. when i get home.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #18)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 09:11 PM

21. here you go. Some of what I researched

when a family member had strokes.

Here are a handful of examples. I didn't have time to post them until now because I was at work.

50 billion cells are replaced in your body everyday. 500K die every second and are replaced. 50-100k brain cells die each day and get replaced. If memory is in the brain cells and they die what happens to memory? That is the question that brain scientists are stymied about.

I can tell you with stroke members of my family that losing large parts of their brain did not affect their memories. So where are memories stored if not in the brain which dies and is remade constantly, up to sixteen times in your life?

Steven Patt (Institute of Patyholody at Frederich Scghiller University in Germany): “Nevertheless all these experiments and descriptions of brain activation processes do not explain how neural activity is the cause for consciousness. Likewise, all attempts which have been undertaken to specify the neurological, information processing and even social theories of consciousness have failed to prove this causal relationship.”

Stanislav Grof, MD PHD psychoanalyst, asst. prof of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins U School of Med. And chief of Psychiatric Research at Maryland Psychiatric Research Center: “My first idea was that consciousness has to be hard wired in the brain. I spent quite a bit of time trying to figure out how something like that is possible. Today, I came to the conclusion that it is not coming from the brain. In that sense, it supports what Aldous Huxley believed after he had some powerful psychedelic experiences and was trying to link them to the brain. He came to the conclusion that maybe the brain acts as a kind of reducing valve that actually protects us from too much cosmic input... I don't think you can locate the source of consciousness. I am quite sure it is not in the brain-not inside the skull... it actually, according to my experience would lie beyond time and space, so it is not localizable, You atually come to the source of consciousness when you dissolve any categories that imply separation, individuality, time, space and so on. You just experience it as a presence.

Sir John Eccles, Internationally recognized brain researcher concluded that “the mind is a separate entity from the brain, and that mental processes cannot be reduced to neurochemical brain processes, but on the contrary direct them. And... a mind may conceivably exist without a brain.”

Sir Cyril Burt, Educational psychologist, 'The Gifted Child': :”The brain is not an organ that generates consciousness, but rather an instrument evolved to transmit and limit the processes of consciousness and of conscious attention so as to restrict them to those aspects of the material environment which at any moment are crucial for the terrestrial success of the individual.”

Consider this: average neuron consists of 80 percent water and about 100k molecules. Brain has 10 billion cells and about 10 to the fifteenth molecules. Each nerve cell in the brain receives an average of 10k conections from other brain cells and the molecules in each cell is renewed about 10k times in a lifetime. We lose about 50000 to 100000 brain cells a day so the total brain cell population is decimated by about 10million cells losing 100 billion cross linkages.

In spite of losing the 'place the brain stores shit' (my sentiments) we still have our memories even really really old ones.​

Paul AQ Weiss, Vienna's Institute of Experimental Biology and pioneer in biological research concerning memories remain in spite of cellular and molecular turnover: “And yet, despite that ceaseless change of detail in that vast population of elements, our basic pattern of behavior, our memories, our sense of integral existance as an individual have retained their unitary continuity of pattern.”

I have known people with hydrocephalic brains which condemned them to having incredibly minimal brain mass but they were able to live normal lives, work and have families and remember. How is that possible to the degree that it has been shown to be if the brain is the repository of memory?

A few places to go and see shit:

&feature=relmfu

it is two part and is part of a BBC documentary on human consciousness. Part 2 is on the list, I think the second one.

I personally had a near death experience having died in front of my sister. I had an experience with my mother and then I came back. My sister slapped the crap out of me to make it happen. I have asked every nurse and doctor I have ever met do you have dreams when you are unconscious? To the last one, I was told no. My pupils were fixed, my skin color was gray and I was dead, dead, dead. The room changed color to black and white and then a pop sounded in my ears. I was in a beautiful place with my mother and then it happened in reverse.

I don't give a fuck who doesn't believe me. I don't care. I know what I experienced and it shows me a lot about life that I would never have known before. I am not afraid to die now because its so damned easy I could almost embrace it.

There are two groups in the world. Those who have these things happen and those who haven't. I believe that the consciousness exists beyond the body or I would not have been able to remember this experience. I was dead. But I remember what happened.

Please notice that I didn't see a light or whatever. I was just there. It was GLORIOUS.

As for the snotty shit that greeted my remarks, what tiny beings you are. Since when is 'science' a simple emphatic no? How sad, sad, sad. But I don't care. The brain is a conduit to our consciousness which is too big for a body that can fail. Otherwise my father wouldn't have had his memories after catastrophic strokes but he did. He was my hero. He remembered everything. So have at it, geniuses. You are on ignore.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #21)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 12:13 AM

23. Boy look at all those links

And to such reputable journals!

Oh wait....

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #23)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 01:51 AM

24. google it yourself. Oh wait. Pissing and moaning is more fun.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #24)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 09:16 AM

25. Given that you are unwilling to do something as simple as including the links in your cut-n-paste

from supposed quotes, why exactly should I bother?

Your sources are so great you are deliberately not including them while quoting from them. That tells me your sources are awful.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #21)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 10:01 AM

26. " 50-100k brain cells die each day and get replaced."

you are overstating neurogenesis here. Although we now know, contrary to former belief, that new brain cells can be produced across the lifetime, the rate is small and restricted to specific small parts of the brain. Consistent with your argument, one of those areas is the hippocampus which is associated to memory, and so it is thought that neurogenesis may play a role in memory. The entire brain does not "die" and get replaced. For the most part, you are born with every neuron you will have. Brain development comes from the blooming and pruning of connections between the neurons, not the growth of new neurons. Plasticity following a stroke comes from "re-wiring" neural circuitry to perform tasks that had been damaged, not from the growth of new neurons. While there is some plasticity it isn't easy. Just my opinion.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #21)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 12:25 PM

28. Don't even try

You speak against scientific conventionalism, even a little, and you get gang-piled on DU. It has happened to me many times. Science, sadly, has its own orthodoxy. I just ignore them ... as I will now.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #21)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 10:01 AM

30. So if one makes repairs to a house and it confoundingly remains to be a house,

that means one must actually reside elsewhere and the house is but a conduit to some cosmic abode? Rebuilding and repairing something does not mean that the original functions necessarily must be destroyed or discontinued.

Please understand I do not believe what you are claiming is impossible, but that I believe it is unlikely. I understand that you do not care, it is not my intention to try to change your beliefs. You appear to have faith in your answers and appear willing to ignore any evidence to the contrary. So be it. To the others who may read this, I find several gaps in the leaps taken...

If the garage of my house is torn off in a tornado, it would not prevent the rest of the house from being functional. A stroke does not destroy the entire brain.

The electrochemical processes of the brain do not instantaneously cease the instant that someone decides a person must be dead. They continue until there is not enough oxygen to sustain them. In the case of hypothermia, that could be hours where most people would insist that the victim has to be dead. There is certainly no evidence to support that the brain of someone who survives a near death experience is completely non functional for the duration of the event.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #21)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 03:01 PM

31. roguevalley.

You know what you experienced. No one else can know what you experienced. You can't convince other people of things they haven't experienced unless there is some objective evidence. That does not mean that the experience you (or someone else) has had is not true or was not a true experience. It just means that experience was for you. Don't be offended if other people don't believe you. We all have different gifts.

The experience was real. The explanation is not fully known or grasped yet.

Thanks for telling us all about what you lived through.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #31)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 08:53 PM

32. thank you honey. i just posted a comment about what

I had read and got slammed. It was just a comment I don't expect or even want agreement on. It was just an observation. I would hope for and expect civility and only you gave it. You always were mannerly and kind. I appreciate that. I don't need anyones agreement on anything.

I am just interested and posted. The shellacking I got was low class. Thank you for showing me what the others will never do-courtesy.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #9)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 01:28 PM

14. No, they aren't. (nt)

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #14)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 06:55 PM

17. so you say so and thats it. damned psychic arent you

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #9)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 03:14 PM

15. This is the Science group

not the Silliness group.

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Response to DavidDvorkin (Reply #15)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 06:54 PM

16. ah what a card you are.

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #16)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 06:58 PM

20. And what a complete lack of links and/or supporting information you are!

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Response to roguevalley (Reply #9)

Wed Nov 14, 2012, 11:42 AM

27. Huh?

Well, there's that one guy who says that and a lot of dualists who think that as a matter of faith.

But neurologists are seeing something different. All consciousness seems to originate in the brain, which is just what one would expect unless you've bought into the ghost in the machine.

NeuroLogica Blog

Brain Science Podcast

And here's a link to an article about this case: Communicating with the vegetative

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Tue Nov 13, 2012, 11:59 AM

12. Locked-In Syndrome.

Usually caused by damage to the upper brain stem.

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