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March 21, 2005

Hammesfahr: Terri could be fed orally if it were allowed

Topics: News

In an article today in BP News,

"The important thing for people to understand is that she can eat and swallow right now,” said William Hammesfahr, a neurologist who has examined Schiavo. He is in many of the videos circulated through the news media showing that Schiavo is at times responsive and aware.

"They are truly withholding food from a person who is awake, alert, and can eat and swallow,” Hammesfahr said. After spending at least 10 hours with Schiavo several years ago, he told Florida Judge George W. Greer that she can improve with therapy.

Hammesfahr said his credibility had been questioned at the time, but he has since been vindicated in court and currently maintains a thriving private practice in Clearwater, Fla. Despite reports attacking him, he said he has never lost his license to practice medicine and currently is involved in litigation surrounding the ordeal.

Hammesfahr was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology in 1999 for his work in brain injury and stroke. He is a recognized expert in treating neurological disorders, having successfully treated thousands of patients using vasodilator therapy, which increases blood flow to the brain, thus healing conditions previously thought to be untreatable.

Standing with a handful of supporters outside of the hospice late in the evening Mar. 19, Hammesfahr told the Witness Schiavo previously has swallowed pudding and daily swallows almost two liters of water by virtue of being able to process her own saliva and sinus drainage.

"That’s liquid and that’s the most difficult thing to swallow," Hammesfahr said of her saliva. "If she can swallow that she can swallow food or pudding."

Hammesfahr said there are at least 50 physicians he knows of, in private practice and related to medical universities who have said Schiavo is not in a PVS or in a coma


Hammesfahr said that about 30 percent of his cases are more severe than Terri Schiavo’s, and that she most likely could improve, whether by his approach or another.

"You can get almost anybody with a brain injury or a stroke better," Hammesfahr said. "I think that’s the long and short of it.

"It’s not that [Schiavo simply] deserves a chance, she deserves rehabilitation," Hammesfahr continued. "She’s not going to get the rehabilitation if she gets killed off here."

Each day Schiavo is off the feeding tube increases the chance that she will end up in a coma, Hammesfahr said. He described what happens to the human body when it is deprived of food and water.

"People who die of starvation, their acid eats through their stomach, they develop infections in their body, their body starts to dissolve from the inside out, they develop seizures, [and] frequently it breaks their back," he said. "They have to have medications to essentially put them into a coma to not have their body break their back or something of that nature."

He explained that the process of putting someone in a coma after withholding nutrition and hydration is part of an "exit protocol" that involves delivering powerful drugs like Morphine and Valium to the patient when they are expected to die.

"The danger for Schiavo is that if she is in a coma, she will not have the type of monitoring that could help her recover if the feeding tube is reinserted.

"Putting a person in coma is very dangerous,” Hammesfahr said, and after 7-8 days she might end up in an irreversible coma or with further brain damage.

Angel Watson, a Pinellas Park, Fla., resident who works with the Caring and Sharing Center for Independent Living, said she once was considered to be in a PVS, after a skiing accident left her paralyzed, but that she made remarkable improvements because of her strong will to live.

Referring to the two other times Schiavo’s feeding tube was removed and surgically re-inserted, Watson said it is wrong to treat Terri as if she would not want to live.

Watson questions Michael Schiavo’s insistence that he loves his wife and cares deeply for her. Michael Schiavo, Watson said, has had ample proof that his wife wants to live.

"She’s the embodiment of a living will,” Watson said. "She is a living will. He’s tried to kill her twice and she has the will to live.

"What more [evidence] could you possibly want?"

[Hat-tip to Sigmund, Carl & Alfred]

[Cross posted at My VRWC]

Posted by beth at March 21, 2005 9:07 PM

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"The important thing for people to understand is that she can eat and swallow right now,” said William Hammesfahr, a neurologist who has examined Schiavo. [Read More]

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In an article today in BP News, "The important thing for people to understand is that she can eat and swallow right now,” said William Hammesfahr, a neurologist who has examined Schiavo. He is in many of the videos circulated through the news media... [Read More]

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» !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! from MoFiZiX Gr4FiX
If I didn’t know any better, I would swear this federal judge was a freakin’ Clinton appointee! Oh, wait a minute… he is a freakin’ Clinton appointee!!! Well, now that splains everything! Sheesh! No matter what the Schindlers do,... [Read More]

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Tracked on March 22, 2005 6:43 AM

» Neurologist who examined Terri says she can swallow and eat by mouth from JackLewis.net
From BPNews: A doctor close to the Terri Schiavo case told the Florida Baptist Witness that the 41-year-old disabled woman... [Read More]

Tracked on March 22, 2005 10:16 AM

» Judge Refuses to Insert Terri Schiavo's Feeding Tube from Lockjaw's Lair
Fox News is reporting that Judge James Whitmore of the US District Court has refused to have Terri Schiavo's feeding tube reinserted pending the upcoming court case. Whittemore is a Clinton appointee. An important point to understand here is that... [Read More]

Tracked on April 22, 2005 12:51 PM


Our government is not interested in this doctors facts. He is a good and courageous man for speaking out, but TERRI IS STILL STARVING TO DEATH, AND THE BUSH BROTHERS ARE NOT INVOKING EXECUTIVE POWER TO SAVE HER. They may SAY they care; ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS.

Get some guts Jeb, and W, and save a helpless woman who is being tortured to DEATH. Two of the most powerful men on earth are ignoring her.


Posted by: Bryan at March 21, 2005 9:24 PM


Yes...he obviously is a far better man than those other nuerosurgeons...pay no attention to thos past allegations of his credibility and ethics...

Posted by: jason at March 21, 2005 9:30 PM

I think the doctor is right. I have a neurological disease. Eating food is the easiest. I only stopped choking on water a few months ago (November of 2004) and I still choke on my saliva several times a week.

This is the reason IMO that Judge Greer ruled against letting her be fed and given water orally. She'd swallow it instead of choking, and then they'd be in a nasty fix.

Posted by: MaxedOutMama at March 21, 2005 9:32 PM

This is all great but why is it coming to light only now? Why wasn't he screaming this from the housetops days ago?

Posted by: Mo at March 21, 2005 9:39 PM


Jason, apparently you don't know ALL the facts. He certainly was discredited before. He has since been vindicated, as well. But I guess half the story is all YOU need, isn't it? Otherwise, you wouldn't be beating the drums for Terri's DEATH.

And FWIW, the death-cult's vaunted Dr. Cranford has some pretty serious issues himself.

You'd better come a hell of lot more heavily armed than that, Mr. Fisk (Jason). That is just WEAK.

Posted by: Beth at March 21, 2005 9:39 PM

That's right! If the Bush brothers had any courage whatsoever and really valued human life they would have already sent in the Federal Marshals to enforce the Senate Supeano and extract her from the hospice and take her to a real medical facility. Once there rehydration and feeding should start as quickly as she could handle and once she has regained her strength since the government almost murdered her the government should pay for top of the line rehabilitation!

The Bush brothers and many other politicians and Judges are cowards! They are cowards that are too scared to rock the boat (risking their political behinds) even a little to save a completely innocent human life.

When I was little I was taught in school that the government was there to serve the people. Now I realize sometime it serves the people, quite often in bosses people around, obviously it steals from people, but NOW THE GOVERNMENT MURDERS PEOPLE!

Bush and Jeb could end this with ONE PHONE CALL, save Terri's life, and give her some *real* medical care which would include the best rehabilitation medicine can offer!

But they don't, their two chicken, and she might die because they are too sorry to ACT instead of wait on politicians to debate for days and days while an innocent woman (who could even be spoon fed if it were allowed) is forcefully starved to death while her parents helplessly are forced to watch (even if it is from outside the hospice camped out in foul weather).

Shame on Bush and shame on Jeb Bush. Also, shame on any reps and dems that don't get on the phone to the White House and demand that the executive activate the federal marshals.

Bush! You claim to be FOR LIFE! Please prove it and gain the respect of so many of the same people the re-elected you!

Posted by: TotallyTED at March 21, 2005 9:40 PM

All I know is that Terri's lying in a hospice bed being starved to death and that fat bastard judge prolly went home to feed his fat face on a nice steak dinner and a bottle of CHARDONNAY!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: MoFiZiX Gr4FiX at March 21, 2005 9:42 PM

What I can not understand is if you watch the videos of her she is alert. Jesus Christ please just put feeding tube back in!!!

Posted by: heather at March 21, 2005 9:49 PM

Try to feed her. If she does want to die, she'll refuse the food. If she isn't home, she'll aspirate, and then can be NPO.

Why is this only obvious to me?????

Posted by: carson at March 21, 2005 9:52 PM

Beth, thanks for reading what was posted above and then telling me...as though I didn't read that sentence on him being "vindicated". The fact that you used the very same word tells me that you spent no time looking up other sources or the past history of the doctor, but instead merely read the aforementioned excerpt. Funny thing is, if this doctor had an opinion that sided with Michael Schiavo, you would immidiately bring to attention those past allegations, and say how he was a horrible and "discredited" nuerosurgeon. Come on...you can admit it...I won't laugh at you.

Also, what was that "BWAHAHAHA"...I thought only super-villians laughed like that...weird.

Posted by: jason at March 21, 2005 9:57 PM

Ted, I hope you are expressing your thoughts to the Bush brothers, respectfully of course.

Posted by: powersthatblog at March 21, 2005 10:00 PM

This is the most hideous thing I've ever seen.

Terri is continually referred to as brain dead - she is not. She is brain injured. The difference being that brain dead patients cannot respond at all, Terri can, and cannot breath on their own, Terri can. So what's the rush?
The real issue is that she has rights but her rights are being deferred to a husband who's intent on her demise. Hello - can we get a reality check on this guy and his motivations?
A woman is not the property of her husband, especially where life and death are concerned. Her family has a right to take her back from a husband that doesn't want her. All the legal battles of the past fifty years concerning the rights of a woman verses the rights of the husband are about really all about this. She's not a piece of property, he cannot be allowed such decisions. Let's not forget that not too long ago a husband had the right to pretty much do what he wanted. He could restrict her, he could beat her and in some cases kill her out of passion, jealousy or rage and it did not amount to much. A woman as a complete equal and not a piece of property is one of the things at stake here.

We continually hear the pull the plug crowd say that Congress is "meddling" in a family matter as they they were fighting over Grandma's china. Congress does have a right and a precedent for what they are doing and I praise them. Our founding fathers created this system for good reason and it is being excersised on behalf of another person and her family who are related by blood and not a dubious contract.
RAN - Bedford, MA.

Posted by: Robert A. Newell at March 21, 2005 10:09 PM

Wrong again, Jason,

"Identical complaints about his advertising filed in previous years have been found to be without merit by the Board of Medicine, he said.

In addition, Hammesfahr said, Medicare officials have found his therapy medically reasonable and will allow payment for the procedure.

'If my therapy were not true, we would have been prosecuted criminally and an injunction filed against me by the state to stop me from practicing in Florida a long time ago,'
Hammesfahr said."

If you're going to go by the words of the likes of Felos, then I'll use the other items there that you conveniently ignored.

I will certainly ADMIT that Dr. CRANFORD has issues; namely, his association with the Hemlock Society and his work as an "expert witness" for euthanasia cases, and his having served on the board of the Euthanasia Society of America. Doesn't that strike you as just a LITTLE biased? Or do you not even know who Cranford is and why I mention his name? Have you done YOUR homework? I have; in fact, I used to think she was "brain dead" and should be allowed to die according to what I THOUGHT were her wishes. I USED TO think her parents "just couldn't let go," as so many of your side keep droning. I USED TO think all this, until I got better informed rather than getting the McStory from the MSM. So did many--if not MOST--of the people supporting Terri. The truth is, most everyone who has reviewed the arguments on BOTH SIDES have been at least put in enough doubt to believe she should LIVE. DEATH is IRREVERSIBLE.

Of course, if you don't care to review ALL SIDES (The SP Times is certainly not the authority here, needless to say) then you obviously aren't interested in changing your mind at all.

So why the hell are you here?

Apparently, you don't understand what this site is for or about. See the title? "Blogs FOR Terri." It doesn't say "Blog to tell everyone why she should die." At the very least, if you're going to be here, you should come looking for information because you aren't sure if you've gotten both sides of the story.

Posted by: Beth at March 21, 2005 10:13 PM

Does Michael really have some "evil" alterior motive though? I mean, the fact that he's turned down monetary offers to give custody back to the Schindlers, one being for 10 million, the most recent being 1 million, pretty much shows that he isn't in it for the money. More so, its not as though he's trying to get rid of Terri so he can remarry, considering at any point he can get a divorce due to the power of attorney placed on Terri. So really...what could be the reason that he's holding on to all of this? To me, there are two explanations..one is that his wife really did say she would rather die, and then these recent developments would make him a very loving husband willing to put up with alot of hatred people now have for him, and the other would be the popular theory held by this site: that he somehow tried to kill her, but merely wounded her badly, and is now attmepting to destroy the "evidence". While its pretty upsetting that people here would automatically view this as the "obvious" answer..thus basically calling this guy a heartless murderer...I really haven't heard much factual support for the latter theory. I would appreciate it if someone could post the links they have to whatever sites hold "evidence" toward his past actions..as well as facts refuting claims most doctors have that Terri suffered an injury due to anorexia and lack of oxygen to the brain.

Posted by: jason at March 21, 2005 10:18 PM


I'm here because interestingly enough, this site updates more than any other site I've seen regarding the Schiavo developments, that includes terrisfight.org. Since this place provides me with the fastest postings of what's going on..quicker than the actual news sites themselves..I come hear frequently now. I have no intention of posting to try to "stir things up", that would be pretty stupid, since I actually appreciate this site...even though I am inclined to disagree with things I see as "slanting".

Posted by: jason at March 21, 2005 10:23 PM

Michael's lawyer just said on Gretta (FNC) that Terri was administerd last communion in 2003 before the tube was removed.

That means she swallowed food!

Posted by: Brad Leake at March 21, 2005 10:25 PM

I totally agree with the post above to try to feed her and if she is ready to die, she will refuse the food. On Larry King tonight, Michael said she is not being starved, not eating is a natural process of dying. In that, the lying POS is correct - when a person is dying, their brain functions start to shut down one by one & food is not something they even consider - your body no longer craves hydration or food-you don't even feel thirsty or hungry when you're in the dying process-and not eating is a natural part of the natural process of dying. But she is not naturally dying!!! She's not eating because she is not being fed!! How does that man manage to twist everything to suit his own agenda? He tried to make it sound so painless and completely natural. It would be natural IF she were dying from other causes! I'm surprised I still have a television after just watching that show. I wanted to just smash the screen. NOW he's moved up from she commented she wouldn't want that during a TV show to he "made a promise to her" that he would not let her live that way. And that the funds allotted for her care went to pay for the nursing home, medical bills & his legal fees when not one penny went towards her care. Does this man think we're all stupid, blind and deaf???? I for one am really sick of him insulting my intelligence. My face turns beet red every time he and his attorney state "these were Teri's wishes" as if it's the gospel truth & the media perpetuates that!! NO-ONE knows if those were her wishes, only that that lying POS SAYS so. And I also agree with the caller who said blood relatives should make the decision. I really don't understand why a husband's wishes are honored over the woman who gave birth to you -who would have your best interests at heart more than your own parents? It's impossible to put my fury into words - but you can see I'm really trying :):)

Posted by: Janice at March 21, 2005 10:31 PM

BRAD -- I missed that! FELOS said that???

Posted by: Beth at March 21, 2005 10:34 PM

I feel your pain! You don't KNOW how hard it is for me to CENSOR myself! There was another thread where I almost got filthy on a scummy troll (who's history, now). God knows, I'm holding my tongue...I'm used to hanging out at the Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler, where the language is, shall we say, a little looser than most of the B4T readers would appreciate. ;-)

Posted by: Beth at March 21, 2005 10:38 PM

> Terri was administerd last communion in 2003 before the tube was removed. That means she swallowed food!

Or that it was fed through her tube. On Friday they announced that she had been given wine through her tube as part of her Last Rites.

Posted by: OvertOther at March 21, 2005 10:44 PM

Ahhh, that makes more sense. Thanks, OvertOther!

Posted by: Beth at March 21, 2005 10:50 PM


I am here to give my support to all of the people who have bothered to read up the information and can see that there is something seriously wrong in this case.

I used to be one of the people who did not want to know about this case. When I first read about it, I thought that she was brain dead, but I have now learned that is not the case. I have seen the video clips, and thanks to the stupidity of the Australian mainstream media those clips have been played on the news over here. As more people see those clips they recognize that she is not in a vegetative state and they are questioning what is happening to Terri.

This is a fight that is more than just Terri. It is about every disabled and elderly person who has someone waiting to kill them with a flimsy excuse like "I heard her say...." Hearsay evidence is not allowed in a criminal trial. Even if a killer confessed to a crime to a fellow prisoner, that is still inadmissible evidence. It should not be allowed in a case where someone does not have a living will.

I heard the tape of Terri after the tube was taken out and it sure sounded like she was trying to say "I wanna live"

Posted by: Maggie at March 21, 2005 10:50 PM

Maggie, thanks for that comment! Glad to hear you speak up affirming what I said about people changing their minds.
Stupid Australian MSM? Heh. It can't be any worse than ours! LOL I think it's a disease.

Posted by: Beth at March 21, 2005 10:52 PM

Jason, you really need to read about the background of Michael Schiavo, not easy to do with the media coverage not doing it, and then try and persuade people to think this guy's motives are honorable.

They aren't.

Posted by: Susan Nunes at March 21, 2005 10:54 PM

Maggie, I just went to your blog, great posts there!

Susan and Maggie, both of you should get on the BlogsForTerri blogroll:


Posted by: Beth at March 21, 2005 11:05 PM

ABC News did a long segment about Terri on its "Evening News" today, and in it they said she had had an MRI soon after she was hospitalized the first time.

I have also read that she has never had an MRI. Anyone know which is correct? ..thanks..

I hope I wake up tomorrow to hear that she has been transferred to a hospital for the tube to be replaced, *food and water,* and for a full, latest-technology neurological evaluation.

Posted by: Alice at March 21, 2005 11:06 PM

I think they misspoke, Alice; she had CT scans. Leave it to the McNews to fumble one word and get the whole thing in an entirely new context. Sheesh.
The other night, Ceci Connolly said on The Beltway Boys (Fox) that Terri was in a COMA, fer Chrissakes.

Posted by: Beth at March 21, 2005 11:09 PM

If Terri made a casual statement about not wanting any tubes (respirator) to sustain her life it would have been said before Florida included feeding tubes as life support .

Posted by: Caryn at March 21, 2005 11:10 PM


Yes, michael has ulterior motives--we just don't know what they are. And don't be impressed that he gave up the $1.0M offer; he still has whatever might be left from the lawsuit. He has much more to lose if Terri lives, recovers and is ever able to tell us what happened the night she collapsed. No issue, though--dead wives can't talk, so he got permission to silence her.

Also, michael admitted on Larry King that he didn't know what Terri wanted; her death was what he wanted.....

As for the Communion being given during 2003; to my knowledge, Terri was denied Holy Communion because it was "food" and in violation of the starvation order.

You know, BTK greer calls himself a pro-life, conservative Christian. Wonder how he's going to face his JUDGE when he finds himself DEAD? "I only did what Terri wanted, Lord....didn't matter what YOU wanted. YOU were the last thing on my mind; michael had the money then...YOU understand, don't YOU, LORD? It was all about "Terri's Wishes".

And, what will the JUDGE say..."Well, BTK, this is about MY Wishes...MY WILL BE DONE!"

Not Terri's Will. Not michael's will. Not george feel-less's will. And definitely not BTK greer's will. No, it's about GOD's will, and georgie forgot God's will.

PS...for all you bloggers who don't want religious arguments presented over facts, please don't mis-read my post. I am hypothesizing that mr BTK greer presents himself as a Christian; from his "Christian" image, I wanted to envision him meeting his JUDGE. He probably believes that so long as he believes in Jesus and accepts Him as His Savior, he will go straight to Heaven; even if he ignores Jesus's will and God's Law.

Funny thing is, SATAN believes in GOD, too. Satan KNOWS Jesus is our Lord and Savior; of this he has no doubt...but Satan is still in Hell. Oh yeah, he didn't want to follow God's law, either.

Posted by: Tress at March 21, 2005 11:11 PM

I just went to your blog too (again) and caught your note about Yglesias. I hate to admit it, but many of my fellow "conservatives" (heh) are shrieking about the same thing with "procedure." I can't believe how effing stupid these lawyer wannabes (yeechh) on the left AND right are... like it makes them so damned intellectual hypothesizing about procedure and Federalism--like they cared before??? Like that's more important than our first and most basic right--to not be killed? What.Ever.

Posted by: Beth at March 21, 2005 11:14 PM

Maggie, what channel was that? It can't have been SBS - their coverage on last night's news was a thorough hatchet-job: "brain-dead," "religious right," and all the rest of it.

Posted by: Edward at March 21, 2005 11:17 PM

So they said to take the tube out and she is not to receive anything that way, but have said no you can't give her food or water through her mouth either?

Posted by: adrienne at March 21, 2005 11:22 PM

As for me I shudder in complete revulsion of Schiavo and Felos because of the way they have warehoused Terri in nursing homes and hospice like she were a THING,dehumanizing her and treating her like she has been dead all these years. His behavior shouts of his rejection of Terri's humanity. Especially when you consider that the last rehab doctor(1993) had reported that she was making good progress and should be admitted in to Gainesville Rehab Facility...Michael ignored the recommendation. He has put Terri in such at risk and danger with his neglect and deprivation for over 12 years . He has a vested interest in making Terri appear as grossly incapacitated as possible. Thats why he makes every ill warranted decision he possibley can .The depths of his deprivity can be seen in how sub human he has treatd Terri...PLEASE GOD-make the judges see it too. He has treated her like a corpse for 12 years . Terry is no dummy she knowws what he has done to her....NO WONDER SHE IS NOT RESPONSIVE TO HIM WHEN HE IS THERE.!!! Darn our girl Terri is demonstrating exactly how sharp she really is...she knows Michael for the monster he is...she witholds her responses when he and his attorneys are there. SMART cookie !
He is a real control freak who gets off on having absolute control over Everything about Terri. He is the perfect profile of an abuser who will stoop to any depth even complaining of his right to privacy sohe can kill his wife in private...with no interruption from no one...How stupid can the state of Florida be. He is making her die. I tell you all..Terri is not the worst of the disabled population , not by a long shot. If The Euthanaisists succeed in killing Terri with how alive and responsive she is ...we as a society are doomed. The privacy Michael cries for would allow tired, over burdened relatives or criminal guardians to get court ordered deaths for disabled persons and no one who be made aware. Michael is not even Terri's partner or significant other /and has not been since BEFORE the malpractice trials, so all that crying in the court room about caring for her forever was alie and a MAJOR CON JOB...far worse than S Peterson or any other sociopath we have known of late.Think about it ....he has been successful at conning the Courts of Florida and actually vebally inciting rebellion against the President and Congress. He knows no bounds and is completely out of control. He is fightening and should be behind bars. He is a real manipulative brazen person who tries to destroy anything that gets in the way of the facade he has created.

I do Pray ther is a very serious investigation of his treatment of Terri...the red herring is the way he refers to Terri as a "vegetable' as a "houseplant' and then in the same breath says he loves Terri very much. As he dehumanizes her angain and again..he loves her..? How pathetic.
Sorry...I am very tired and have been fasting since Terri's tube was removed....I tolerance for Schiavo is zip..nada...zilch. The most evil being I have ever seen in action. No wonder so many of the nurses are afraid of him.Did you all know that besides Teri, he also attempted to asault terri's sister...and physically attacked Terri's brother....? so he does have a history of assault. He has got to be stopped.
I need my rest.

Posted by: JoMarley at March 21, 2005 11:30 PM

Father, forgive them....they know not what they do.

Posted by: Tress at March 21, 2005 11:37 PM

It appears that there is no MRI scan to speak of. With so many of us pointing out that procedural lapse, you'd think that George Felos would have trotted it out by now to prove his PVS case. But he has never done so. Instead we have this from National Review:

"So why hasn’t an MRI been done for Terri? That question has never been satisfactorily answered. George Felos has argued that an MRI can’t be done because of thalamic implants that were placed in Terri’s skull during the last attempt at therapy, dating back to 1992. But Felos’s contention ignores the fact that these implants could be removed. Indeed, the doctor who put them in instructed Michael to have them removed. Michael has never done so."

Read the full article here.

The diagnosis for PVS were based on a CT scan, which does not provide enough information in cases like these.

BTW I have been unable to reply further to this post (too many comments?) but I'd like to respond here if the admins don't mind. In case commenters in this one were offended when I referred to trolls in that other post, my apologies. I was referring to those one-liners that urged Terri's death without a word to say about the issues raised in the post. Jim -- you're not a troll, as your homework shows, even as I urge you to dig deeper.

Someone there asked a question about why Terri's parents never brought up the domestic violence angle until more recently. The reason:

"Prior to 2002, Terri’s medical records had been kept sealed under court order at the request of Michael Shiavo. "

That says it all, I think.

Posted by: Jeff Tan at March 21, 2005 11:38 PM

Beth, it really bothers me, too, while I can understand the argument.

However, this case is about disabled people's rights and about the need to examine guardianship laws to try to prevent such abuses in the future.

Posted by: Susan Nunes at March 21, 2005 11:42 PM


"Yes Michael has alterior motives, we just don't know what they are".

See...that's not good. In order to condemn the man, one needs to have a clear basis for their claims. While you may hope that he has some horrible alterior motive, so far little has been presented to support that notion. The Schindler's filed a motion to have an investigation on possible spousal abuse, but after it was denied as a just a means to prolong the real court case, they admitted that it was pretty much a "time-consumer plan" all along. They really haven't been expressing such allegations against Michael, so I'm hesitant to even give the comments about his motives much thought, considering there has basically been no evidence provided to show that Terri did not experience an accident due to pottassium deficiency and oxygen loss, and rather something more sinister.

While I understand that I'll probably recieve a comment along the lines of "maybe you should read other sources before you speak", I'd like to say that I have, and I've made sure to read from a multitude of sites, many of which not being "mainstream". So please provide a refuting claim other than that one.

Posted by: jason at March 21, 2005 11:57 PM

[Bye-bye, Don! ::waving:: --Beth / The Management™]

Posted by: Don Jackson at March 22, 2005 12:04 AM

I myself haven't even bothered much with the allegations of abuse, because it's not even the most important reason to me why she should live. That said, I just did a Google search and there are a lot of places that talk about it. Here's one, and yes, it's CNS News so you can take it FWIW, but it reports from outside sources, not as simple commentary:


Posted by: Beth at March 22, 2005 12:04 AM

Don, get lost, you ignorant tool. You have no clue who is supporting Terri. If you DID, you'd know there ARE liberals who support her. Liberals who AREN'T HYPOCRITES like you obviously are.

Say bye-bye, Don.

Posted by: Beth at March 22, 2005 12:06 AM

I do not think the fact that she swallows her own saliva proves anything. My grandmother had a stroke and could process her own saliva, but could never re-learn to eat or drink. Need more evidence than someone who looked at her "several years ago". Would help if the family would release to the publice entire several hours of videotape and let us see if she smiles, grimaces, grunts reflexively when no one is in the room. Not edited version. The family may be able to make its case if it is shown she is only responsive like this when people are in the room.

Posted by: trbell at March 22, 2005 12:28 AM

Well I have watched Michael Schiavo on Larry King for the second time tonight. He really is a piece of work. My only hope is that there are people in positions of authority setting the man up and giving him enough rope to hang himself resulting in a nice long sentence.

Watching this man is so similar to watching Scott Peterson in action. It just isn't possible for a specialist in personality disorders not to see this man for what he is and run screaming to the authorities.

I am hoping that this federal judge really is the quality individual that has been indicated. If he trully is an honest man and he takes the time to read all of the testimony I just can't see how he could possibly continue to allow Terri to die at the hand of her husband!

How can Michael use Terri and show her as responsive to further the malpractice suit and then turn around and claim she is entirely unresponsive so he can kill her. Just a minor inconsistency in a sea of so many!

Where is the F.B.I. in all of this? If they can catch Scott Peterson, this joker is not nearly as smooth. A great deal of what he has done has been right out in the open. Who is paying attention?

Posted by: imdll at March 22, 2005 12:31 AM

I don't know if you're yet another drive-by so I don't know if you'll even see this, BUT...all it takes to convince you is the one (complete) videotape?



Neurologists who are familiar with diagnosing and treating PVS and other brain injuries have told me that PVS is a notoriously difficult diagnosis to make. It requires a great deal of time spent with the patient over several days or weeks. The reason for this, as Dr. Bell explained, is that brain-injured patients have severely disrupted sleep/wake cycles. Dr. Mack Jones, a neurologist in Ft. Walton Beach, Fla., added that patients with severe brain injury will have greatly varying levels of alertness: “Two independent examiners may get an entirely different impression depending on when and how long he/she has spent performing the examination. For example, one examiner may unknowingly attempt to evaluate the patient during a stage of sleep. Another examiner, by chance, may find a more responsive patient simply because [the patient is] now more aroused.” Dr. Morin concurred, saying that in his experience “the attention of brain-injured patients is very erratic,” and that because of this he has “seen inadequate assessments even by experienced neurologists.” Because of these difficulties, the American Academy of Neurology has made it clear that it can take months for a physician to establish with confidence the diagnosis of PVS. A 1996 British Medical Journal study, conducted at England’s Royal Hospital for Neurodisability, concluded that there was a 43-percent error rate in the diagnosis of PVS. Inadequate time spent by specialists evaluating patients was listed as a contributing factor for the high incidence of errors.

So, did Dr. Cranford, or any of the doctors testifying for Michael Schiavo, spend months evaluating Terri? No. To be fair, none of the doctors appearing for the Schindlers spent months with Terri either. But it is hardly coincidental that the doctors who spent the most time with Terri came to the conclusion that she is not PVS. The doctors brought in by the Schindlers spent approximately 14 hours examining Terri over more than two weeks; their conclusion was that Terri is not PVS, and that she may benefit from therapy.

In marked contrast, Dr. Cranford examined Terri on one occasion, for approximately 45 minutes. Another doctor for Michael Schiavo, Dr. Peter Bambikidis of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation in Ohio, examined Terri for about half an hour. When Dr. Bell learned of the cursory nature of these exams, he said: “You can’t do this. To make a diagnosis of PVS based on one examination is fallacious.”


Posted by: Beth at March 22, 2005 12:50 AM

I wonder if Michael Schiavo would take a lie detector test to prove his innocence?

This whole thing is just crazy...

If Terri IS in fact in a PVS, the thing she is most likely to feel (if anything) is pain. If she's in a better state then that, then the pain would probably be worse. Hard to know how painful starvation and dehydration are (it's said to not be very painful but I don't know), but no doubt bedsores... bad rash from diarrehea which often accompanies a feeding tube... stiff muscles... pain the feeding tube itself causes... those would all cause her pain, too. 15 years worth of pain.

No MRI scan was ever done?

I read court documents that say she did drink up to 15 glasses of unsweetend tea per day (upsetting her balance of nutrients), she had "dieted" from 200 pounds to 118 at 5'3" and it's not uncommon for bulimics to have electrolyte imbalances at any weight which can cause heart problems (there are many who have died at a normal weight... Kristen Watts for example had a heart attack at 5'3" and 120 pounds), so it's not unheard of and could very well be the case here...

...it seems she was really close with her family, wouldn't they have noticed something was wrong if her husband had been abusing her? Plus he lived with them for about 3 years after her collapse, so they were obviously very close as well for that time. It doesn't make sense to me that a guilty man would want ANYTHING to do with his wife after she survived an "attack", let alone spend years living with her family and taking care of her. But I'm trying to look at all the facts right now. And hope it is God's will that is done, whether he is ready for her to go to heaven or stay here on earth... right now it just seems her soul is trapped inside of her body, or at least, it appears that way.

Posted by: MK at March 22, 2005 1:24 AM

Oh, my-my-my... what a great job you "right to death'ers" have done in actually turning this into a DEBATE!

Newsflash - it's NOT a "debate". The government wants Terri to die based on hearsay ALONE, and some of y'all are backing that UP! Why even bother with living wills!!!


Posted by: airtroop at March 22, 2005 2:03 AM

Ahhh...airtroop, you've missed the worst of it. I spent half the day with these creepy death-cultists.
Glad to see you here! :-D

Posted by: Beth at March 22, 2005 2:18 AM

Ahh, we "gulf coasters" meet again, beth :-D

We're gonna win this thing, Beth. You just watch. I'd be pulling my hair out if my hair was long enough to grab onto but I'm an optimist as well as a bitcher :-)

Hang in!

Posted by: airtroop at March 22, 2005 2:33 AM

I've refrained from pulling my hair out by chain-smoking. ::sigh::
I really ought to take better care of my own health; maybe I should start drinking again instead of smoking.

I sure am glad the trolls all went beddy-bye finally...every time I leave for five minutes they come back in waves. 40,000 hits today and it seemed like half were trolls--thanks to the death-cult thread at the Daily Kos where someone linked to this site! It's great to see there are still sane liberals who aren't hypocrites like the bloodthirsty Kossacks I saw today. Creeeepy.

Posted by: Beth at March 22, 2005 2:42 AM

Beth, I'm out... I can't take any more of this in a week, or even one day. It's hurting me badly to think of her starving like that. HOW SICK! Anyway, Beth, God Bless ya and everybody else who's sticking up for Terri's right to live.

I'm gonna get some sleep (if I can). I PRAY I'll wake up to the news that Terri's feeding tuble has been re-inserted. In fact, I'm gonna think positive....

Posted by: airtroop at March 22, 2005 4:36 AM

you guys are hilarioiusly blind to the facts here

Posted by: wtf at March 22, 2005 9:47 AM

Michael is not very smart. Michael is a nurse. He could have granted Terri's,so called, wish to die, by taking her into his home and neglecting her needs so that she would die. He would not have needed to go to court or to have donated all that money to George Felos and " The Hemlock Society"

Posted by: Larry at March 22, 2005 10:18 AM


Re-read my post--I think the cynicism of the statement, "We know michael has ulterior motives, we just don't know what they are" comes through in my post.

Point blank....michael wants/needs Terri dead because if she lives, there is a chance she will recover and be able to tell us what happened!

Read the affidavits; he doesn't care about her...he just wants her dead.

My point was that we don't know exactly what he did to her to cause her to be in this state. We don't know how he treated her and why she had such suspicious bone scans. All we know, is that once she is dead, she cannot tell us and as long as she lives, michael lives in fear.

Only two people alive today know what michael (the 6.2" giant) did to his 5.2" wife. One of them is lying through his teeth as he has clearly DEMONstrated contempt for her; the other is being starved to death.

May God strike the homes of these "just" judges with lightning, disease and pain. Not death....Let them live as the animals they have shown themselves to be.

Posted by: Tress at March 22, 2005 11:22 AM

Why doesn't someone just go into Terri's room and try giving her some food and water? If media can be present to document the outcome, so much the better. If the person is arrested for trying to help a living person stay alive (preferably a doctor who believes in the motto "First do no harm") then this could be a wonderful opportunity for a test case. How could a reasonable judge convict a person for being good to someone who is starving? And if there were a conviction, then that would be the worst travesty of justice, and society as a whole would be forced to deal with the issue even more than we are all doing now.

Obviously, someone would have to be willing to take the chance of serious personal repercussions: possible jail time, etc. Plus, it would help if the person were an American, I would imagine. I wish I could go and try to feed Terri myself, but I am a Canadian, and barely able to pay my basic living expenses let alone go to Florida to fight directly for something like this that I believe in. But if I could, I would love to face a judge and see him or her try to say I was doing something wrong by saving a dying person. All through history, people have gone to jail for causes they believed in (Joan Baez, Nelson Mandela come to mind). And sometimes that can be the best way to create change in a repressive society that does not really value life and see all people as created equal. If people are allowed to die because they are seen as imperfect or unworthy of living, then that sets a terrible precedent and paves the way for a hopeless society where personal fate is in the hands of a few powerful decision-makers. I don't normally ever advocate law-breaking. And it is preposterous to think that offering another human being sustenance could be against the law. But in this life-and-death situation, it seems better to ask for forgiveness instead of permission, and just go in and attempt to give her food and water. Please, somebody, try that, especially if you, yourself, have nothing to lose.

Posted by: Marilyn at March 23, 2005 4:47 AM