Doctor says your consciousness lives on for at least a while after “death”

It’s another spin on the near death experience topic. This time, it’s a doctor saying that consciousness is not gone after the heart stops beating but brain cells may be viable for hours.

‘God held me’: Coming back from the brink of death is possible, says doctor.

Parnia, a critical care doctor and the director of resuscitation research at Stony Brook University School of Medicine, writes in his new book, “Erasing Death: The Science That is Rewriting the Boundaries Between Life and Death,” that a person can now be resuscitated long after they previously would have been considered clinically dead.

“The advances in the last 10 years have shown us that it’s only after a person dies that they turn into a corpse, that their brain cells start to die,’’ Parnia told Savannah Guthrie on TODAY Tuesday. “Although most people think this takes place in only four or five minutes, we now know that actually brain cells are viable for up to eight hours.”

Many scientists and doctors believe those commonly described images of white lights and warm feelings are hallucinations brought on by lack of oxygen to the brain. But Parnia feels that they are proof that consciousness is not extinguished after the heart stops beating.

It’s proof, he said, that death is not an absolute but a process that can be reversed.

An interesting idea. It does not involve anything paranormal or supernatural but he wants to implement procedures in hospitals to bring people back from clinical death. This would appear to be testable with animals or at least tried with humans (who are already dead so what do they have to lose?)

Tip: Meganne Valerioti

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  6 comments for “Doctor says your consciousness lives on for at least a while after “death”

  1. One Eyed Jack
    February 27, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    Viable brain cells does not equal consciousness. Personally, I don’t want to be resuscitated if I’m coming back brain damaged. I’ve worked long enough in hospitals to understand that life without quality of life isn’t something that I want. The US medical establishment is obsessed with life at any cost. No thank you. I have no desire to spend my life staring blankly, drooling, and completely mentally unaware. Some states of life are not worth living.

  2. February 27, 2013 at 4:31 AM

    I’m sure the doctor is quite correct in stating that there is quite a long grey period between life and death. We already know that some people have been resuscitated, and gone on to continue with a normal life, a prolonged period after their their heart stopped beating or breathing ended. We don’t have any say in the matter however. As it is not logical to think we are in control of our own lives, we cannot decide to live.

  3. One Eyed Jack
    February 27, 2013 at 7:06 AM

    we cannot decide to live.

    In the US, we cannot decide to die either. I’ve always thought it strange that we don’t have the right to choose to die. There should be no more fundamental right than to decide that for yourself.

  4. February 27, 2013 at 7:55 AM

    “The advances in the last 10 years have shown us that it’s only after a person dies that they turn into a corpse, that their brain cells start to die,”

    NEWS FLASH: You don’t turn into a corpse until after you die. And we only found this out in the last 10 years?

    While I am pretty sure Dr. Parnia did not mean it that way, sometimes i wish people would think a little longer before they speak. It might lead to better reporting of medical and science news. This is exactly why i prefer to give my opinion in writing instead of an offhand quote. At least then i have a chance of fixing it before it gets out.

  5. Mr. Shreck
    February 27, 2013 at 7:59 AM

    “he wants to implement procedures in hospitals to bring people back from clinical death”

    This guy needs to see Re-Animator stat. It won’t end well.

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