Steven Thorpe Brain Deads

Published: April 25, 2012

Steven Thorpe Brain Deads, A man who suffered severe brain injuries in a car crash has claimed his family had to prevent doctors turning off his life-support machine while he was in a coma.

Steven Thorpe, 21, was so badly injured when his car crashed in Warwickshire that doctors told his family he was not expected to recover, he said.

“I was out of hospital seven weeks later,” Mr Thorpe said.

An NHS spokesperson said his case was “unique” because a brain rarely survived “such excessive trauma”.

Mr Thorpe, from Kenilworth, Warwickshire, had been travelling home from Leamington in February 2008 when the vehicle he was in was involved in a collision with two other cars and a horse that had run loose on the A452.

One man died and the horse was fatally injured in the incident.

Mr Thorpe was taken to University Hospital in Coventry where he says doctors put him into an induced coma, and performed a craniotomy to help alleviate any swelling on his brain.

The 21-year-old said medical staff gave up hope of any recovery after two days, but his parents refused to believe they had lost him.

“When they sat around the bed they had the feeling I was there and some words they said to me I reacted to,” Mr Thorpe said.

“It wasn’t that they’d get a kick or a swing of the arm – there would be something that flickered.

“If my parents hadn’t asked for the second opinion, and if Julia hadn’t been there, I wouldn’t be here.”

Dr Julia Piper, a GP who runs a private practice in Leicester, had been recommended to Mr Thorpe’s father by a work colleague and agreed with the family.

“She believed in them and listened,” he said. “Perhaps the NHS should have listened.”

Dr Piper said when she was seeking further advice she was told by fellow professionals that Mr Thorpe’s parents should accept the fact that four doctors had claimed he was brain dead. She eventually got a positive verdict from a neurologist. (BBC News)

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