'Dead' Woman Suddenly Opens Her Eyes Right Before Doctors Take Out Her Organs

One thing I've always been proud of being is a registered organ donor. Why wouldn't anyone be one? If you can save a life after you don't need your organs anymore, that just seems like the right and honorable choice to make. But then you hear something like this! A woman at a hospital in New York had died and was about to have her organs harvested when -- the "dead" woman opened her eyes! Lord have mercy, that's some scary ass shit.

The 41-year-old woman, Colleen S. Burns, had reportedly been admitted to the hospital following a drug overdose. She was pronounced brain dead. However, a nurse performed a reflex test and found Burns' toes was still reacting, and nurses also noticed that her nostrils flared, she was breathing independently, and her lips and tongue were moving.

For some head-smackingly bizarre reason, she was nevertheless prepped for surgery for organ harvesting. She was even given a sedative -- even though she was thought to be dead?! (Hello, the dead probably don't need sedatives!)

And then, all of a sudden, Burns opened her eyes. Finally, the surgeons backed off with their scalpels. Shudder.

The woman's mother said that her daughter wasn't even upset about almost losing her life to a mistake -- because she had been suicidal anyway. Tragically this brush with death didn't change Burns' mind about hastening her own, and she later committed suicide. No word on whether her organs were harvested for real this time.

The hospital has reportedly been investigated and fined. But frankly this makes me kind of worried. Are doctors so eager for new organs that they're ready to jump in there and start pulling them out even if you might still need them? It's almost enough to make me rethink my donor card.

But I've read too many miracle stories about people's lives being saved because of organ donors. I think the chances of something happening like with this woman are a lot less than the chances of saving someone's life with your donation.

Even so ... gives you the chills, right?

Are you an organ donator? Does this make you think twice about it?


Image via Peretzp/Flickr

doctors, medical miracles


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keelh... keelhaulrose

Just to let you know donors whose hearts are still beating are often given sedatives or anesthetic because there is some debate as to if they can feel pain, and they'd rather err on the side of caution as sedatives don't harm the organs.

nonmember avatar FarmersWife

I am not an organ donor for this very reason. It is too common that the medical field chooses to value another life over your own. I am against anyone thinking they have the right to decide how long I need my organs or if someone needs them more than me. It would be nice if they had "levels" so you can agree to be a donor or brain dead or dieing, or choose that nothing will be harvested until you have passed naturally

LostS... LostSoul88

Please provide facts about it being commonly known. Your comment is very ignorant and very paranoid.

Rhond... RhondaVeggie

FarmersWife is so right. Why I went in to the ER for a sprained ankle and my dr chased me around with a scalpel trying to extract my spleen for a transplant. True story*

*Really not a true story, it's made up like every other story about organ hungry doctors.

nonmember avatar trina

Hmm.. I thought that organs of drug abusers aren't supposed to be harvested ?

jkp-buff jkp-buff

If you're afriad of something like this happening, you can have a living will with someone you trust as your medical power of attorney. You can still be an organ donor, but then someone you trust would have the final say so for when they take your organs.

MamaS... MamaSnaps

Makes you wonder how many times it's happened that we don't know about...

nonmember avatar kaerae

@Trina - It was a suicide attempt overdose, she wasn't a drug abuser. Maybe try reading the actual article next time...

Heath... HeatherMazzone

So basically they were about to murder this woman. I don't understand how they were givin then green light to take her organs if she was responsive in any way. Sad how in the end it didn't even matter though.

Kenneth Higgs

The organ harvesting industry fails to tell people that vital organs can only be transplanted from a living patient with a beating heart, respirating lungs and oxygenated blood still circulating through their arteries and veins. Brain death is not real death. Just like Colleen Burns, many patients diagnosed with so-called "brain death" have later revived and walked out of hospital (www.OrganFacts.net). I was once in a rehabilitation centre (had a broken leg), and I saw a severely brain injured lady who was in a coma for months... seemingly "dead". Yet, during that time, she received healing treatment, including physiotherapy, and eventually revived. She sat at my table for numerous meals and her speech and movement became ever better and better. Some time later, I was still recovering from my broken leg, but this severely brain injured lady was able to walk out of the centre under her own steam. Clearly "brain death" is not true death. Brain injury patients deserve better care and healing treatment, NOT vivisection for their organs. More facts at : www.OrganFacts.net.

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