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Brain death and the vegetative state 

Brain death and the vegetative state

Chapter:
Brain death and the vegetative state
Author(s):

P.J. Hutchinson

and J.D. Pickard

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199204854.003.240506
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date: 25 March 2017

Death can be defined as the irreversible loss of the capacity for consciousness and brain stem function, combined with irreversible loss of the capacity to breathe. The irreversible cessation of brainstem function, whether caused by a primary intracranial catastrophe (e.g. trauma, haemorrhage) or the result of extracranial cranial events (e.g hypoxia), will result in the same clinical state, hence brain stem death is the same as death of the patient.

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