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jrlewis's picture

Is locked-in syndrome

Is locked-in syndrome inconsistent with Grobstein’s story about neurobiology that the brain equals behavior?  Locked-in sydrome is a severe form of paralysis where the patient can only control their eyes.  The site of the injury to the nervous system is very rostral.  There is virtually no behavior available for observation in a person with locked-in syndrome.  It is challenging to differentiate between locked-in syndrome and a persistent vegetative state.  Current methods result in frequent error and a significant amount of suffering for the patient and loved-ones.  Locked-in syndrome is diagnosed by using current biological and medical understanding of the brain.  How will our perception of this illness and other severe brain injuries change as our scientific understandings change?  Can we see anything on the horizon? 

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