Thursday, 17 October 2013

Life After Death? New Techniques Halt Dying Process

The line between life and death is not as clear as once thought, now that developments in the science of resuscitation have made it possible to revive people even hours after their heart has stopped beating and they are declared dead, medical experts say.

"Historically, when a person's heart stopped and they stopped breathing, for all intents and purposes, they were dead," said Dr. Sam Parnia, an assistant professor of critical care medicine at State University of New York at Stony Brook. "There was nothing you could do to change that," Parnia told an audience at the New York Academy of Sciences last week.

However, in the process of unraveling mysteries of death at the cellular level, scientists have learned that death does not occur in a single moment, but instead is a process. It is actually after a person has died -- by our current definition of death -- that the cells of the body start their own process of dying.

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