Every human life has value.

This is more than slightly disturbing, given the number of people who approve of having people with similar diagnoses starved to death:

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

For the whole time, he was trapped in his own body 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 computerised 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.

“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.

Please, tell me again how Terri Schiavo was in a “vegitatative state” and was not conscious of what was going on around her. How, when she looked and smiled at her mother those were just “involuntary reactions.”

Sadly, I’m sure some people still think that being starved to death is better for people in these situations whether they are conscious or not.

November 24th, 2009 at 12:20 am
One Response to “Man Trapped In 23-Year ‘Coma’ Was Conscious”
  1. 1

    This is a clear-cut case of locked-in syndrome (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Locked-in_syndrome) – Rom Houben’s case study is mentioned at the Wikipedia entry.

    Terri Schiavo, on the other hand, was braindead from beginning. Her autopsy revealed her brain was almost completely destroyed, with no signs of brain activity and no chances of recovery whatsoever.

    Funny they never took comprehensive EEGs on Mr. Houben. I just wonder how many similar cases there might be around the world?