• Saundra Smyrski

Brain Death Evaluation



And if the appropriate testing is not available, brain death should not be declared: you should bring in the appropriate expertise, transfer the patient elsewhere, or await cardiopulmonary arrest (Dr. Ariane Lewis, 2021)."


A new study supports the notion of a single brain death exam as being sufficient, instead of the currently proposed- 2. This has since become a hot debate. Not all experts are in agreement. Some opposing thoughts include:


- organ donation conflict of interest

-inadequately trained staff concluding brain death

-duration from the onset of the event and testing

-error reduction possibility of 2 exams

-limited institution inclusion in study

-ancillary testing not a mandated requirement


According to the article in Neurology Today, it seems a great deal of stress is being placed on the inadequately trained personnel calling the shots. Dr. Greer mentions, "...any institution of sufficient size to have an intensive care unit and taking patients who are intubated with catastrophic neurologic injury must have adequate, well-trained personnel to perform these determinations. The people doing this should be experts (2021)."


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