Archives For Dr.Paul Byrne

Don’t Do the Apnea Test

The doctors do an Apnea test to confirm brain death. The apnea test is not done to benefit your loved one.

It is done to confirm brain death.

An Apnea test is done to see if the patient without the help of a ventilator can breath or gasp or have abdominal movements as the carbon dioxide builds up in the body.

If there is any respiratory efforts by the patient as carbon dioxide builds up, the person is negative for brain death. The symbol for partial pressure of carbon dioxide in the arterial blood is PC02.

If you don’t breathe or gasp or have abdominal movements you are declared “brain dead.”

Apnea Test is NOT the gold standard

We were told the Apnea test, was the ‘gold standard‘ for determining “brain death.” The only thing we understood from that statement was that the test would show if Jamie could expel the carbon dioxide (CO2) that would build up in his body by gasping for air.

We had no clue the test was not being done to help Jamie.

The best way to understand this is to imagine holding your breath under water. After a few minutes you can not hold your breath anymore, and you will gasp for air. That is what is occurring in the Apnea test. The carbon dioxide is building up in your body.

Dr. Paul Byrne on the Apnea test, “carbon dioxide normally remains below 45 in us and when a patient is on a ventilator, the goal is to keep the carbon dioxide below 45. When doing an apnea test (the test for sleep apnea is not an apnea test), the respiration supporting ventilator is taken from the patient causing the carbon dioxide to increase to at least 60, and sometimes higher. When the carbon dioxide goes to these levels, swelling in the brain occurs or gets worse if it is already present. This is tantamount to suffocation.”

Vanderbilt started Jamie’s Apnea test at >64 and finished it at >115.

I’ll leave you to determine what occurred.

Jamie Apnea Test

Dr. Cicero Coimbra, is head of the Neurology and Neurosurgery Department at the Federal University of Sao Paulo, Brazil.

He also has denounced the Apnea test as a diagnostic tool.

The test, he said, which cuts off oxygen to the brain, will bring about severe, irreversible brain damage in patients who, with proper care, would otherwise have had a good chance of survival.

“Diagnostic protocols for brain death actually induce death in patients who could recover to normal life by receiving timely and scientifically based therapies,” he wrote.

Dr. Coimbra also has stated, in his research paper Apnea Test A Bedside Lethal ‘Disaster in the Operating Room, “while most physician advocates may publicly comment on “the possibility of damage by the apneic insult to transplantable organs,” they are unwilling to publish information on “the ethical implications of worsening the clinical and neurological conditions of the potential donor or even causing his (or her) death.”

He argued: A large number of brain-injured patients, even in deep coma, can recover to lead a normal daily life; their nervous tissue may be only silent, not irreversibly damaged, as a consequence of a partial reduction of the blood supply to the brain. (This phenomenon, called “ischemic penumbra,” was not known when the first neurological criteria for brain death were established 37 years ago.)

However, the apnea test (considered the most important step for the diagnosis of “brain death” or brain-stem death) may induce irreversible intra-cranial circulatory collapse or even cardiac arrest, thereby preventing neurological recovery. Dr. Cicero Galli Coimbra, “The Apnea Test — A Bedside Lethal ‘Disaster’ to Avoid a Legal ‘Disaster’ in the Operating Room,” Finis Vitae, pages. 135,335,313-319 and 355.

In plain, simple, language Dr. Coimbra used this word picture.

If you show up in the emergency room with a possible heart attack, the doctors don’t subject you to a stress test. You are cared for in every way to prevent any further stress to your heart.

When your brain is injured and you agree or are subjected to an Apnea test you are putting further stress on a severely injured organ…your brain.

Dr. Yoshio Watanabe,a cardiologist from Nagoya, Japan concurred saying “that if patients were not subjected to the Apnea test, they could have a 60% chance of recovery to a normal life if treated by hypothermia. (deliberately induced cooling)

 Just say NO to the Apnea Test

  • The Apnea Test is not for the patients benefit. 
  • Don’t let the doctors tell you it needs to done, if you want to give your loved one a fighting chance. 
  • It cuts off oxygen to the brain, at a time when the brain needs it most. 
  • The swelling in the brain gets worse.
  • The only purpose for the Apnea test is to call “brain death” and harvest your organs.

***I’ll post more later on the protocols established for doing the Apnea test but for now you just need to say no if you have a loved one in a coma.***

Informed Decision

It is important to make An Informed Decision before being an organ donor.

In this question and answer format (link above) Dr. Paul Byrne answers the questions that everyone needs to be aware of before signing the organ donor card.

What does it mean to make an informed decision before you become an organ donor?

Does a teenager between the ages of 16-18 understand what it means when they sign the donor card?

I submit to you the answer is no.

Teenagers are thrilled to be getting their driver’s license and when they approach the clerk she simply asks them, “Do you want to donate your organs after you die?  If they say yes they are added to the Organ Registry.

Sign a contract with the organ donation card What do they know about being an organ donor ?

  • Are they giving informed consent to be cut open while their heart is still beating?
  • Do they know they will be given anesthetics to keep them from jerking, moving and squirming on the operating table?
  • Do they know that if they are truly dead their organs will be no good?
  • Do they know they are not dead in the sense they “think” it means…”when you die?”

The concept death by neurological criteria is being challenged more and more by neurologists. Although many of them still agree with organ donation they want to drop the hoax that you are really dead. They want to make it acceptable to publicly and openly say, we take your organs when you are “almost dying”.

Why, because they know it is the truth.

Do your children know it is the truth?

Pulling out hair at this article Disabled As Good As Dead

There is a shocking article published in the Journal of Medical Ethics by two Bioethicists, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong from Duke University and Franklin Miller from the National Institutes of Health’s Department. The authors have gone so far as to write an opinion paper this past January in which they  rationalize that death and total disability are morally indistinguishable.

In the paper they argue that harvesting organs from living disabled patients is not morally wrong.

In this rambling paper with total illogical reasoning they suggest, “there would be no incoherence in permitting vital organ donation from still living patients who are totally disabled.”  (Go ahead read it or skim it you’ll get the point soon enough.)


In the aforementioned paper they opine that their critics might object to abandoning the “dead donor rule” and that by doing so would take us down the slippery slope to procuring vital organs from the mentally retarded or other groups of vulnerable individuals with disabilities.

Absolutely not, they write. “We can hold the line for vital organ donation by continuing to restrict it to those in a state of total (universal and irreversible) disability. It is only these donors who would not be harmed or wronged by vital organ donation, since all other donors have abilities to lose.”

Yea right….

FYI, the “dead-donor rule” refers to two accepted ‘ethical norms’ that governs the practice of organ harvesting before transplantation:

1) vital organs should be taken only from dead patients,

2) living patients should not be killed for or by organ procurement.

I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments. (Click the comment chain above.)

Today I Met Dr. Paul Byrne

February 15, 2013 — 9 Comments

Dr Paul Byrne and Missy CaulkToday I met Dr. Paul Byrne.

Who is Dr.Paul Byrne is he you ask?

Dr. Paul A. Byrne is a Board Certified Neonatologist and Pediatrician. He is the Founder of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center in St. Louis, MO. He is Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at University of Toledo, College of Medicine. He is a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics and Fellowship of Catholic Scholars.

Dr. Byrne is past-President of the Catholic Medical Association (USA), formerly Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at St. Louis University in St. Louis, MO and Creighton University in Omaha, NE. He was Professor of Pediatrics and Chairman of the Pediatric Department at Oral Roberts University School of Medicine and Chairman of the Ethics Committee of the City of Faith Medical and Research Center in Tulsa, OK. He is author and producer of the film “Continuum of Life” and author of the books “Life, Life Support and Death,” “Beyond Brain Death,” and “Is ‘Brain Death’ True Death?”

When Jamie was in the trauma unit at Vanderbilt,and was declared “brain dead”,I had to quickly do research on brain death. I ran across two things on my internet search, the story of Zak Dunlap who woke up right before his organs were taken and an article by Dr.Byrne on brain death. It was not a lot to go on…but enough information that we knew we would not allow Jamie’s organs to be harvested.

After my son died,I began to research in earnest the clinical diagnosis of brain death. How could this possibly have been accepted in our society and world wide?

In November I contacted Dr.Byrne as he lives in Toledo and is not that far from Ann Arbor. I told him I was writing a book and would like to meet him. We met today and are meeting again on Wednesday.

Dr. Byrne has presented testimony on “life issues” to nine state legislatures beginning in 1967. He opposed Dr. Kevorkian on the television program “Cross-Fire.” He has been interviewed on Good Morning America, public television in Japan and participated in the British Broadcasting Corporation Documentary “Are the Donors Really Dead?” Dr. Byrne has authored articles against euthanasia, abortion, and “brain death” in medical journals, law literature and lay press.

Dr. Byrne has agreed to review my book and today took with him my manuscript for medical clarity. As I said on my About page, I am not a doctor and don’t play one on TV, I am a mom who through a tragic situation with my son was thrust into learning the deception of brain death.