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International Poker Champion
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Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
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Science Is Starting to Explore the Gray Zone Between Life and Death

French researchers recently roused a patient out of a vegetative state. 

 

Getty images.

We used to think of death as a moment. We reel when a beloved person meets a tragic end, be it in real life or our favorite show. The reality is, death is often a long, drawn out process that has to do with treatment, hospitals, and in the end, hospice care. Of course, it can strike suddenly too and without warning. But medical science has progressed to the point where we aren’t thinking of death so much as a moment anymore, but a process.

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UCLA Scientists "Jump-start" the Brain of a Coma Patient

UCLA researchers successfully use a new technique to "wake up" a patient after coma.

A new ultrasound treatment by UCLA scientists was used to restart brain activity in a 25-year-old man recovering from a coma. Before the treatment, the man showed few signs of consciousness and understanding speech, able to perform very limited movements. Three days after the treatment, the man could fully understand language, communicated by nodding his head and even fist-bumped one of the doctors.

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