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Physician Who Examined Schiavo for Over 10 Hours Critical of Autopsy Report
Christian News Wire ^ | June 19, 2005 | Staff

Posted on 06/20/2005 7:52:12 PM PDT by DaveLoneRanger

Dr. William Hammesfahr, nominated for a Nobel Prize for his work in Medicine, has been recognized by agents for Medicare, the federal government, and others for new approaches to helping the brain injured.

Dr. Hammesfahr has been identified in helping patients with chronic brain injuries from many causes actually leave long term disability, and return to work. Dr. Hammesfahr, was identified by Judge Susan Kirkland, for the State of Florida Department of Health, in her judicial ruling in which, for the State of Florida, Department of Health, found that he was "the first physician to restore deficits caused by stroke."

Dr. Hammesfahr has released the following statement in response to the autopsy report on Terri Schindler Schiavo:

We have seen a lot on the autopsy of Terri Schindler Schiavo in recent days, that I feel needs to be addressed. To ignore these comments will allow future "Terri Schiavo's" to die needlessly after the wishes of clinicians and family are ignored.

Considering that there were so many physicians and therapists who were willing to step forward to treat Terri Schiavo, from university based practitioners to those in private practice, it clearly shows that the mainstream medical community across the board, those involved in treating patients, knew that they could help Terri.

The record must be set straight. As we noted in the press, there was no heart attack, or evident reason for this to have happened (and certainly not of Terri's making).

Unlike the constant drumbeat from the husband, his attorneys, and his doctors, the brain tissue was not dissolved, with a head of just spinal fluid. In fact, large areas were "relatively preserved."

The purpose of the therapies offered by so many, from major universities, brain injury centers, and from private practice physicians, is to improve and restore quality of life, and function, which the mainstream medical community clearly tried to get to her.

I have had a chance to look at Dr. Nelson's analysis of the brain tissue, and essentially, as a clinician, these are my thoughts.

The autopsy results confirmed my opinion and Dr. Maxfield's opinions, that the frontal areas of the brains, the areas that deal with awareness and cognition were relatively intact. To use Dr. Nelson's words, "relatively preserved." In fact, the relay areas from the frontal and front temporal regions of the brain, to the spinal cord and the brain stem, by way of the basal ganglia, were preserved, thus the evident responses which she was able to express to her family and to the clinicians seeing her or viewing her videotape. The Spect scan confirmed these areas were functional and not scar tissue, and that was apparently also confirmed on Dr. Nelson's review of the slides. Dr. Maxfield's estimates of retained brain weight were apparently accurate, although there may have been some loss of brain weight due to the last two weeks of dehydration.

Dr. Maxfield and myself both emphasized that she was a woman trapped in her body, similar to a child with cerebral palsy, and that was born out by the autopsy, showing greater injury in the motor and visual centers of the brain. Obviously, the pathologists comments that she could not see were not borne out by reality, and thus his assessment must represent sampling error. The videotapes clearly showed her seeing, and even Dr. Cranfoed, for the husband, commented to her that, when she could see the balloon, she could follow it with her eyes as per his request.

That she could not swallow was obviously not borne out by the reality that she was swallowing her saliva, about 1.5 liters per day of liquid, and the clinical swallowing tests done by Dr. Young and Dr. Carpenter. Thus, there appears to be some limitations to the clinical accuracy of an autopsy in evaluating function.

With respect to the issue of trauma, that certainly does not appear to be answered adequately. Some of the types of trauma that are suspected were not adequately evaluated in this assessment. Interestingly, both myself and at least one neurologist for the husband testified to the presence of neck injuries. The issue of a forensic evaluation for trauma, is highly specialized. Hence the wish of the family to have observers which was refused by the examiner.

Ultimately, based on the clinical evidence and the autopsy results, an aware woman was killed.

Dr. W. Hammesfahr


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Front Page News; News/Current Events; US: Florida
KEYWORDS: autopsy; quack; schiavo; schiavoautopsy; terrischiavo
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1 posted on 06/20/2005 7:52:17 PM PDT by DaveLoneRanger
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To: DaveLoneRanger
Dr. William Hammesfahr, nominated for a Nobel Prize for his work in Medicine

It's never good to start an article with a lie.

2 posted on 06/20/2005 7:53:59 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: DaveLoneRanger

Already posted, with nearly 600 responses.


3 posted on 06/20/2005 7:54:03 PM PDT by sinkspur (If you want unconditional love with skin, and hair and a warm nose, get a shelter dog.)
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To: Howlin

It's articles like this that make the word "Christian" seem suspect. Christian News Wire. That MUST be a great publication.


4 posted on 06/20/2005 7:58:07 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Death is better, a milder fate than tyranny. "--Aeschylus)
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To: DaveLoneRanger

Thank you for posting this. There are other threads about Terri Schiavo, and it seems to be bothering some people that so much news is getting out.


5 posted on 06/20/2005 8:00:31 PM PDT by BykrBayb (Impeach Judge Greer - In memory of Terri Schindler <strike>Schiavo</strike> - www.terrisfight.org)
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To: Pan_Yans Wife

It's amazing. It's not coincidence that Ringling Brothers Circus has its headquarters in Florida.


6 posted on 06/20/2005 8:02:59 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: Howlin
I'm beginning to think that his full legal name must be "Dr. William Hammesfahr nominated for a Nobel Prize".

How else can you explain why it appears in every single article referencing this clown.
7 posted on 06/20/2005 8:04:41 PM PDT by skip_intro
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To: DaveLoneRanger

Dr Hammesfahr was not "nominated" for a Nobel prize. Congressman Bilirakis was persoanlly impressed by a successful treatment and wrote a letter to the Nobel Committee praising Hammesfahr and recommending the committee consider Hammesfahr for recognition.

Other than that, I have read Hammesfahr's transcripts and other material about his work and am impressed by him. He is brilliant but "unconventional" but so what....most of the patients he treats (with a high success rate of improvement, not cure) have no other options. If I had a stroke, I would hope to be treated by a Dr like Dr Hammesfahr.

He spent 10 hours with Terri- more time than her regular Doctor spent with her over 5 years.


8 posted on 06/20/2005 8:05:52 PM PDT by silverleaf (Fasten your seat belts- it's going to be a BUMPY ride.)
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To: skip_intro

This should teach us a BIG lesson; they are all basically parrots; once one of them prints something, nobody else takes the time to verify it.

Not even "conservative" sites.

Now, if we can find it, why can't they?


9 posted on 06/20/2005 8:07:43 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: silverleaf
Dr Hammesfahr was not "nominated" for a Nobel prize.

Then why does he continue to have that very fact posted on his web site?

10 posted on 06/20/2005 8:08:29 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: Howlin

Who is allowed to nominate someone for a Nobel prize? Just curious, not challenging your post.


11 posted on 06/20/2005 8:11:50 PM PDT by Flightdeck
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To: Flightdeck

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Florida neurologist that claims that he can help Terri Schiavo might be a quack

To put this short:

This is a sad case of parents wanting their child to remain alive, and a husband arguing that it's more humane to let her die, since there’s no living will. This case has all the issues included: State power over medical decisions, death, religion, family disagreements on death, public protests, quackery and more.

And everyone is trying to take advantage of the vulnerable and easily-influenced, example here:

Media Matters for America (MMFA) has printed this article about Dr. William Hammesfahr. It appears that he’s "a Nobel Prize nominee for his work in helping people with severe brain injuries".

There are hundreds of web sites claiming that William Hammesfahr was nominated for a Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology in 1999.

Some may claim that the "nomination" of Hammesfahr for the Nobel Prize is well-documented in this web site.

I did some research on this topic:

The Secretary of the Nobel Prize Committee has provided this information:

Thanks for your letter and point about our confidentiality regarding nominees. Specific answers to your questions:

1) All nominations, nominees and nominators are kept in strict confidentiality here for 50 years.

2) There is no way for any person to get confirmation/message from here whether they were nominated or not for any year during the last 50 years.

3) Therefore, if anyone claims being nominated it is never with support from here and should not be regarded as a valid claim.

4) The Nobel Foundation acts on all misuses of the Nobel name, but do not always act on nomination claims since there are so many who claim nominations that the Nobel system simply leaves them without specific action and only inform to all asking that nomination claims are by definition non-valid.

Sincerely,
Hans Jörnvall, Professor
Secretary
The Nobel Committee
Karolinska Institutet
Box 270
SE-171 77 Stockholm, Sweden
Phone: +46-8-33 39 31
Fax: +46-8-32 03 65

Furthermore, the only ones who are allowed to make official nominations, are the following:

The Nominators - Physiology or Medicine

Right to submit proposals for the award of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, based on the principle of competence and universality, shall by statute be enjoyed by:

1. Members of the Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm;

2. Swedish and foreign members of the medical class of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences;

3. Nobel Laureates in Physiology or Medicine;

4. Members of the Nobel Committee not qualified under paragraph 1 above;

5. Holders of established posts as professors at the faculties of medicine in Sweden and holders of similar posts at the faculties of medicine or similar institutions in Denmark, Finland, Iceland and Norway;

6. Holders of similar posts at no fewer than six other faculties of medicine selected by the Assembly, with a view to ensuring the appropriate distribution of the task among various countries and their seats of learning; and

7. Practitioners of natural sciences whom the Assembly may otherwise see fit to approach.

Decisions concerning the selection of the persons appointed under paragraphs 6 and 7 above are taken before the end of May each year on the recommendation of the Nobel Committee.

Prize-Awarder: The Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm

I therefore conclude that Bilirakis is not qualified to nominate Nobel Prize winners. This is the letter signed by Congressman Michael Bilirakis, and it's not legitimate as a nomination, much less as support for a claim to have been nominated.

Furthermore Dr. Hammesfahr has never published any article that I could find using Pubmed. Well, I found Hammesfahr, but not the William Hammesfahr. Nobel Prize nominess would be expected to have hundreds. I think that’s a bit unusual for someone claiming, that they were nominated.

Searching the web archive I didn’t find anything indicating that he was nominated for anything, either.

Trying to find something about Hammesfahr to establish his "expert" credentials one way or the other, he showed up on Quackwatch over a quackery related issue.

To me this guy has very little credibility. It seems that he is more interested in self-promotion than helping.

It's a sad story, but more sad is that quacky doctors are trying to take advantage of Schiavo's prognosis (obviously not good). He should be held accountable, so people don't ever seek out his advice again.

Some few useful and informative links:
Another side of the coin
Key events in the case of Theresa Marie Schiavo
Medical info from blog.bioethics.net
University of Miami Ethics Programs

12 posted on 06/20/2005 8:14:56 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: Howlin

I don't know.

Why do you make it your personal mission to trash absolutely any and all discussion that supports the concept that Terri Schiavo should have been allowed to live and be cared for by her parents?

"Compassion" for the rights of the brain damaged to be euthanized based on hearsay presented by an adulterous spouse and his sister... who recollected dear Terri's wishes to die after the malpractice check was cashed?

nah


13 posted on 06/20/2005 8:17:20 PM PDT by silverleaf (Fasten your seat belts- it's going to be a BUMPY ride.)
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To: Flightdeck

Here's his personal web site (cheesy, IMO) and you'll notice HE claims he's a nominee.

What's a person to think?


14 posted on 06/20/2005 8:17:24 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: silverleaf
I would much rather be treated by Hammesfahr than Cranford. (At least Hammesfahr is concious.)

Exciting things are happening in Neuroscience. We don't need to stay in the dark which is where docs like Cranford live.

15 posted on 06/20/2005 8:18:45 PM PDT by ARridgerunner
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To: silverleaf
Why do you make it your personal mission to trash absolutely any and all discussion that supports the concept that Terri Schiavo should have been allowed to live and be cared for by her parents?

Nice diversion, but that's not what I did.

What good is your argument is you have to quote liars?

16 posted on 06/20/2005 8:20:21 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: Flightdeck

http://www.hni-online.com/


17 posted on 06/20/2005 8:20:50 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: Howlin

You'd expect webpage after webpage being filled with the science of the good-doctor's work. It seems pretty skimpy to me. Oh, yeah... his research ISN'T widely accepted afterall. He should fire his webdesigner.


18 posted on 06/20/2005 8:31:47 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Death is better, a milder fate than tyranny. "--Aeschylus)
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Terri Schiavo's remains buried in Clearwater

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1427101/posts


Terri Schiavo's husband buried her cremated remains in a Clearwater cemetery Monday, inscribing on her bronze grave marker that ``I kept my promise.''

David Gibbs, an attorney for the woman's parents, Bob and Mary Schindler, said inscribing the marker that way was a nasty political statement by Michael Schiavo, who held the service and burial Monday before telling her family.

``Obviously, that's a real shot and another unkind act toward a grieving mom and dad,'' Gibbs said.


19 posted on 06/20/2005 8:58:41 PM PDT by FairOpinion
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To: DaveLoneRanger

While some people criticize him, he was the ONLY doctor who paid enough attention to notice that Terri had visual impairment, which all the other doctors missed, and the autopsy confirmed. The autopsy said she was blind, but that was after she was dehydrated to death.

Here is the full text of Hammerfahr's original assessment:


"She appears to see things best at approximately the.8-12 inch area. She was best able to track large reflective objects like aluminum balloons or sparkling lights (for which a focal length limitation is not an issue.)"

Complete report of Dr. William Hammesfahr, a world-reknowned neurologist

http://libertytothecaptives.net/hammesfahr_dr._report.html


20 posted on 06/20/2005 9:05:05 PM PDT by FairOpinion
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