Margaret A.WinkerMD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthor
In Reply.—Dr Friedman raises an extremely
important point. Surely, we each have a desire to see some good come from
the tragedy we experience—life from death. As a transplantation specialist,
Friedman has insight into this case that adds a new dimension. I honestly
do not recall whether the patient's organs were donated or not. Her death
occurred more than 5 years ago and perhaps because of my own paradigm, transplantation
was not my take-home message.
In retrospect, this patient with basilar artery thrombosis deteriorated
over a 24-hour period to a locked-in state, except for 1 part of her body—her
hand. Her husband was flying in from another state to be with her before she
died. When he arrived, although the patient could not speak, they communicated
by sign language. She died only hours later.
Beasley BW. The Positive Aspect of Tragedy: A Matter of Perspective—Reply. JAMA. 1998;279(18):1441. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-279-18-jac80006