Rom Houben, trapped in his paralysed body after a car crash, described his real-life nightmare as he screamed to doctors that he could hear them - but could make no sound.
'I screamed, but there was nothing to hear,' said Mr Houben, now 46, who doctors thought was in a persistent vegetative state.
His case has only just been revealed in a scientific paper released by the man who 'saved' him, neurological expert Dr Steven Laureys.
'Medical advances caught up with him,' said Dr Laureys, who believes there may be many similar cases of false comas around the world.
Monday, 23 November 2009
This story, courtesy of the Daily Mail is absolutely chilling, real nightmare stuff.
He was so lucky that no-one thought it was in his best interests to die, and so stop feeding him"for his own good."
The claims that anyone is in a 'persistent vegetative state' always sends chills down my spine. As a teenager, I was knocked down by a car and was not expected to live through the night. The next day, the doctors told my mother that I would probably survive, but would be irreversibly brain-damaged. I heard this assessment of my chances, and was desperately trying to communicate with those around me, but couldn't do anything more than make moaning noises. I was terrified. Luckily, my experience was very short-lived. Rom Houben went through this hell for 23 years... all the while, he was able to hear what was happening around him.
Unfortunately, I doubt that this will give the "right to die" contingent any sleepless nights.
Twitch of the mantilla to Matthew Archbold of CMR.