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Tuesday, March 22, 2005

She was improving until her husband had his way

--posted by Tony Garcia on 3/22/2005

Excerpt from a report from Dr. Hammesfahr...
In the Emergency Room, a possible diagnosis of heart attack was briefly entertained, but then dismissed after blood chemistries and serial EKG's did not show evidence of a heart attack. Similarly, a pulmonary or lung cause of the disorder was ruled out in the Emergency Room after normal blood gases and Chest X-Rays were obtained. The possibility of toxic shock syndrome was also entertained. The diagnosis of the cause of her condition was unknown.
So, that puts an end to the heart attack story.
"The abnormal potassium level and sugar level were found on admission to the Emergency Room and were successfully corrected by the hospital staff over the next several days. The patient had a difficult hospital course with the development of poorly controlled seizures and prolonged coma state requiring, for a time, ventilator support. However, the staff noted improvement, and it was recommended by several physicians that she be discharged to an intensive rehabilitation center.

She was eventually transferred to Mediplex in Bradenton for intensive rehabilitation. She was poorly responsive. However, after a brain stimulator was placed in 11/90, the staff started to report greater interactions of the patient with her environment, including intermittently apparently following commands, turning her head to voice, tracking visually, etc."
Then her "loving" husband ordered all rehab to cease, all care to cease and no medications to be allowed.
"her course from that time on included multiple medical problems including recurrent urinary tract infections and hospitalizations, at times with severely low episodes of blood pressure due to a lack of treatment of urinary tract infections ordered by the husband and subsequent urinary sepsis requiring hospitalization. "
Even after years of the husband ordered neglect the report stated:
"In the spring of 2000, three physicians, including Dr. Jay Carpenter, who is a former Chief of Medicine at Morton Plant Hospital, filed affidavits after observing Ms. Schiavo. All three physicians stated that it is visually apparent that Ms Schiavo is able to swallow and, in fact, does swallow her own saliva.

The patient continued with no physical therapy, communication or speech therapy, or routine medical screening evaluations and treatment such as dental care, mammography, gynecological exams or pap smears during this time."

In 2002
"Cranial nerves were intact, and the patient was able to swallow and handle all secretions."

Because of the years of husband ordered neglect it was difficult to determine if she had control of her limbs. Why? For the amount of pain and loss of control. I have had a cast on my right arm for 3 1/2 months and already can tell that I have a lot of pain in my elbow, loss of about 40% range and significantly less control. That is just 3 1/2 months. After 10 years of that...it would be like I was an invalid, I'm certian.

And as for her vegitative state: "Alertness: The patient was alert throughout essentially the entire exam.


The patient would immediately respond to sound, tone of voice and to touch and pain. With respect to responding to those around her, she had limited responsiveness to me personally until approximately 45 minutes into the exam. She started to look at me, against her traditional right gaze preference, about the same time that we started getting significant relaxation in her contracted left arm (the arm that had been contracted for several years.) She appeared to identify the sound of my voice, with the relaxation of the arm. From that point, she would generally look toward the sound of my voice when heard, attempt to find me visually, then track the sound of my voice in its movements, or track me if I was within approximately one foot of her eyes. Prior to that time, she did not track me, or try to locate me visually. When playing music, she had a clear preference to the specific sound track played, and would listen to piano music, but change levels of listening depending on the track played. Her attention to the music would not wander during the track she preferred. She would pick out her mother's voice or her father's voice separate from the music or other voices or sounds in the room, and re-fix her gaze to those people. She would tend not to blink when watching those people. She ignored her husband's loud foot-tapping that went on for approximately five minutes at one point. She also ignored his voice and did not try to seek him out visually when he would at times interject comments during the exam or immediately afterwards.

During various portions of the exam, she would be moved or have her position readjusted. She continued to handle her saliva during this time, never being observed to choke on her saliva."
Those who are for pulling her tube are Nazis in training. They are anti-life.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The MRI images of Terri's brain prove that there is absolutely no way her brain would have recovered.
Take a look at http://www.amptoons.com/blog/archives/2005/03/20/regarding-the-cat-scan-of-terri-schiavos-brain/ and see what I mean.

This whole 'pro life' issue is simply a matter of arguing politics. Don't you think it is just a little bit selfish to take up valuable hospital facillities in order to prolong what is essentially a series of chemical and physiological processes (and not so much 'life' in the conscious sense). I've heard so many of these pro-life rants refering to the 'big-bad doctors' who "claim" that Terri was in a persistant vegetative state and that motor reflexes such as swallowing and her sleep cycle are merely a product of brain stem activity (which has no effect on a persons consciousness and higher order thinking)... but oh no! surely these doctors are lying!!! They just wat to kill Terri too because theyre big and evil...
Tell me, what motivation do you think the doctors would have to give this diagnosis if it weren't true?
Please think about the facts before jumping on the "let's save Terri" bandwagon...

May 18, 2005  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

I'm flattered to have garnered attention from Down Under. Welcome and I hope to "mix it up" with you plenty more in the future.

As for Terri, my position was two-fold
1) With so many questions (regarding Michael's validity to be her guardian, regarding the fact that she was actually improving during the first 2 years while she was undergoing therapy, and the conditions that caused her collapse) we should have given her more rights than a prisoner on death row. We should have kept her alive to resolve all questions.
2) Life is important regardless of our interpretations of "quality". I suggest you read the story on the blog about Thor

Life is precious regardless of quality. To say otherwise is exactly the starting point that Hitler was at. I know life has less precious holdings outside of America (my time living in Europe in the 80s taught me that life to Europeans, at least, is fairly expendable).

Oh, and the 'big bad doctors'...one was from the U of Minnesota (where life means nothing to the liberals here) and the others were partners with Michael's lawyers...business partners at the hospice where Terri was housed during the neglected last 7 years.

May 18, 2005  

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