23 year ‘coma’
A man who spent 23 years in a ‘coma’ was apparently conscious the whole time, news reports have revealed.
Rom Houben, a Belgian engineering student, was left in a vegetative state after a car crash. Using certain medical tests, neurologists proclaimed that he was completely unconscious, in a coma. However, Mr Houben, who is now 46, was totally paralysed – but wholly conscious and aware of what was going on around him.
The situation was discovered when a Belgian neuroscientist conducted state-of-the-art computer analysis. Now, proper care has now enabled him to communicate with friends and family for the first time in 23 years.
According to Sky News, this is likely to renew the right-to-die debate over whether people in comas are truly unconscious, and therefore are at risk.