Response to Comments on "Detecting Awareness in the Vegetative State"

@article{Owen2007ResponseTC,
  title={Response to Comments on "Detecting Awareness in the Vegetative State"},
  author={Adrian M. Owen and Martin R. Coleman and M{\'e}lanie Boly and Matthew H. Davis and Steven Laureys and Dietsje Jolles and John D. Pickard},
  journal={Science},
  year={2007},
  volume={315},
  pages={1221 - 1221}
}
Additional data, supported by relevant functional neuroimaging literature, confirm that the “normal” patterns of brain activity reported in a patient who was clinically diagnosed as vegetative could not have occurred “automatically” in the absence of conscious awareness. The most parsimonious explanation remains that this patient was consciously aware despite her diagnosis of vegetative state. 
Detecting Awareness in the Vegetative State
TLDR
In several recent cases, so‐called “activation” studies have been used to identify residual cognitive function and even conscious awareness in patients who are assumed to be vegetative, yet retain cognitive abilities that have evaded detection using standard clinical methods.
The Assessment of Conscious Awareness in the Vegetative State
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The results extend well beyond the immediate clinical and scientific findings to influencing legal proceedings, raising new ethical questions about the withdrawal of nutrition and hydration and providing new options for patients and families in that decision-making process.
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TLDR
The implications of these results extend well beyond the immediate clinical and scientific findings to suggest an urgent need for a reevaluation of the existing diagnostic guidelines for behaviorally nonresponsive patients to include information derived from functional neuroimaging.
Using neuroimaging to detect awareness in disorders of consciousness.
TLDR
Advances in functional neuroimaging suggest a novel solution to this problem and so-called activation studies have been used to identify residual cognitive function and even conscious awareness in patients who are assumed to be vegetative yet retain cognitive abilities that have evaded detection using standard clinical methods.
Diagnosing Consciousness: Neuroimaging, Law, and the Vegetative State
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It is shown that patients who are diagnosed with vegetative states may retain more awareness than their clinical assessments suggest, and new functional imaging studies have shown surprising levels of brain activity in some patients, indicating that higher-level cognitive functions like language processing and visual imagery may be preserved.
Using functional magnetic resonance imaging to detect covert awareness in the vegetative state.
TLDR
In several cases, so-called activation studies have been used to identify residual cognitive function and conscious awareness in patients who are assumed to be in a vegetative state yet retain cognitive abilities that have evaded detection using standard clinical methods.
Cognition in the vegetative state.
  • M. Monti
  • Psychology, Biology
    Annual review of clinical psychology
  • 2012
TLDR
Contrary to the initial belief, the "vegetative" brain can retain several high-level aspects of cognitive functions, across sensory modalities, including language processing and learning dynamics, and might reflect intact but functionally disconnected cortical modules that do not give rise to the subjective feeling of phenomenological awareness.
The challenge of disentangling reportability and phenomenal consciousness in post-comatose states
Abstract Determining whether or not noncommunicative patients are phenomenally conscious is a major clinical and ethical challenge. Clinical assessment is usually limited to the observation of these
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Functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to demonstrate preserved conscious awareness in a patient fulfilling the criteria for a diagnosis of vegetative state and the patient activated predicted cortical areas in a manner indistinguishable from that of healthy volunteers.
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