Experiment To Bring Back To Life Dead Patients In India Deflected Over Ethical Issues, Says Report

By K. Aviles - 16 Nov '16 09:32AM

A medical study in India aimed at bringing dead back to life has been deflected by the Indian Council of Medical Research, citing ethical issues and the possibility of causing trauma to patient's family, a report says. The controversial experiment focuses on reviving brain-dead victims "to a minimally conscious state."

Science Magazine suggested that the "ReAnima" trial would supposedly use a combination of treatments such as peptides and mesenchymal stem cells, which are intravenous; median nerve stimulation and trans-cranial laser stimulation. To administer median nerve stimulation, the patient's major nerve, running from neck to arm, is stimulated electrically. Meanwhile, trans-cranial laser stimulation uses near-infrared light pulses directed into the brain.

Studies claim these two methods are efficient in showing improving cognition among patients who suffer from traumatic brain injury. However, the "ReAnima" trial does not have any medical evidence proving that its choice of method has already been administered on animals and whether the same has yielded promising effects, according to the report.

Orthopedic surgeon, Himanshu Bansal from Anupam Hospital and head of the team of "ReAnima" experiment, said they wanted to bring back brain-dead patients to a state where they can move their eyes or be conscious about their surroundings. Although no solid evidence yet could prove that brain-dead people can recover their cognitive function, Bansal's belief on its possibility anchors on the medical literature describing brain-dead patients who recovered their full consciousness.

The Telegraph reported that Dean Burnett, a neuroscientist connected with Cardiff University in the United Kingdom, supports the idea of bringing back to life brain-dead patients. According to the report, there are medical journals about cases where brain-dead patients who are on life support regained their full cognitive function. However, more researchers believe that such journal reports are "hard to interpret" as they many of them do not have evidence that indeed the patients involved in those medical journals are brain-dead.

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