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October 1983

A Near-Death Experience in a 7-Year-Old Child

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine and The Children's Orthopedic Hospital and Medical Center, Seattle.

Am J Dis Child. 1983;137(10):959-961. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1983.02140360023008

• Near-death experiences occurring to persons who have survived near-terminal events, such as cardiac arrests or profound comas, have been widely reported in the lay literature; however, there is little documentation of such events in the medical literature. These experiences generally have a consistent core of euphoric affect, an out-of-the-body state, encountering a being of light, meeting others (especially dead relatives), and going from a dark tunnel to a world of light. This core remains consistently present despite wide variations in the religious or cultural background of the person. Such an event occurred to a 7-year-old near-drowning victim. Pediatricians should be alerted to the potential need for counseling in children who have survived near-fatal events.

(Am J Dis Child 1983;137:959-961)

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