A SERIOUSLY sick baby who was declared brain dead by medics started breathing on his own just days later.
The “horrible error” in judgement has prompted health chiefs to review the test used by NHS hospitals to determine whether or not patients are brain dead.
The medical examination used to determine brain death is used when there is clear evidence of serious incurable brain damage.
It involves a series of small tests to check the brain’s automatic functions.
These include shining a torch into both eyes to see if they react to the light; pushing a thin plastic tube down the windpipe to see if it provokes gagging or coughing, and stroking them with a tissue or piece of cotton wool to see if they react.
tuttavia, the test is now being reviewed and rewritten by medics and ethicists at the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges (AMRC), Sky News has said.
This comes after a four-month old bambino – who has not been named for legal reasons – was seen breathing on his own by a nurse, more than a week after doctors had carried out brain stem tests and concluded he had died.
Al tempo, the baby’s parents regarded what happened as a “miracle”.
tuttavia, tests reveal the baby remains brain-stem dead, which is when a person on an artificial life support machine no longer has any brain functions.
The shocking story was revealed during a treatment dispute between doctors and the baby’s family.
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Il dottore, who is involved in the boy’s care, told the High Court she had never seen such a situation before.
She also apologised to the boy’s genitori and said a review into what happened was ongoing.
“I think it must be just beyond comprehension (for the parents)," lei disse.
“That doctors looking after their baby can have made what appears to be such a horrible error.”
Hospital bosses have asked Mr Justice Hayden to make decisions about the infant’s future after a specialist told the judge nothing could be done to help the boy.
Barrister David Lawson, who is leading the hospital’s legal team, yesterday told Mr Justice Hayden that the boy is dying and argued that ventilation should end.
What does brain dead mean?
Brain death is when no brain function exists, causing death.
Brain death results from “swelling in the brain where blood flow in the brain ceases and without blood to oxygenate the cells and the tissue dies” according to Life Source.
Once brain tissue dies, there is nothing that can be done to heal it.
When a person deteriorates to brain death, the body’s entire system stops.
The brain death victim cannot breathe, their heart cannot beat and their body cannot function once the brain dies.
Brain death is a rare event that occurs in one out of every 200 hospital deaths.
They say the judge should rule the boy, who has a serve brain injury and is on a ventilator, should be given only palliative care.
The boy’s parents, want life support to continue.
The judge was told the baby had remained on a ventilator, even though tests had shown him to be brain-stem dead, because there was an ongoing court dispute.
“I don’t know in all honesty whether there are other cases like this,” the doctor told Mr Justice Hayden.
“We are currently reviewing it as professionals.”
Il dottore, who at one stage wept while giving evidence, aggiunto: “I can only say I am terribly sorry for what has happened.
“It has only made a very difficult situation event more difficult.”
This comes just weeks after the conclusion of another high profile case involving life support.
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Last month 12-year-old Archie Battersbee’s life support was switched off despite his parents’ heroic legal fight.
il giovanotto suffered brain damage in the “freak accident” and never woke up.