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BACKGROUND Disentangling the vegetative state from the minimally conscious state is often difficult when relying only on behavioral observation. In this study, we explored a new active evoked-related potentials paradigm as an alternative method for the detection of voluntary brain activity. METHODS The participants were 22 right-handed patients (10(More)
Previous European surveys showed the support of healthcare professionals for treatment withdrawal [i.e., artificial nutrition and hydration (ANH) in chronic vegetative state (VS) patients]. The recent definition of minimally conscious state (MCS), and possibly research advances (e.g., functional neuroimaging), may have lead to uncertainty regarding(More)
BACKGROUND What makes a movement feel voluntary, and what might make it feel involuntary? Motor conversion disorders are characterized by movement symptoms without a neurologic cause. Conversion movements use normal voluntary motor pathways, but the symptoms are paradoxically experienced as involuntary, or lacking in self-agency. Self-agency is the(More)
Pain management in severely brain-damaged patients constitutes a clinical and ethical stake. At the bedside, assessing the presence of pain and suffering is challenging due to both patients' physical condition and inherent limitations of clinical assessment. Neuroimaging studies support the existence of distinct cerebral responses to noxious stimulation in(More)
The blink response to visual threat is a standard bedside method for testing visual processing. In response to a sudden gesture directed toward the eyes, a person with a normal blink response will promptly contract both orbicularis oculi muscles to close the eyelids momentarily. There is no consensus as to whether blinking to visual threat (BVT) is purely(More)
INTRODUCTION The Locked-In syndrome (LIS) is defined by: (i) the presence of sustained eye opening (bilateral ptosis should be ruled out as a complicating factor); (ii) preserved awareness; (iii) aphonia or hypophonia; (iv) quadriplegia or quadriparesis; and (v) a primary mode of communication that uses vertical or lateral eye movement or blinking. Acute(More)
OBJECTIVES The aim of this study was to assess the presence of burnout among professional caregivers managing patients with severe brain injury recovering from coma and working in neurorehabilitation centres or nursing homes. METHODS The Maslach Burnout Inventory was sent to 40 centres involved in the Belgian federal network for the care of vegetative and(More)
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a safe method to modulate cortical excitability. Anodal stimulation can improve the stimulated area's functions whereas cathodal stimulation reduces them. Currently, a lot of clinical trials have been conducted to study the effect of tDCS on post-stroke motor and language deficits, in depression, chronic(More)