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If a person is on life support are they still alive?

Question Posted Thursday August 5 2010, 4:40 am

My grandma is on life support does that mean shes dead or she just unconscious or something? Does life support really help, can it help a person come back? When my aunt was on life a support for being in a coma they just took her off, was she already dead too? Why do doctors put people on life support and take them off a couple of days later?
The doctors might take my grandma off life support.

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blondiebluesky answered Thursday August 5 2010, 3:45 pm:
This is just me personally speaking, but i dont think someone on life support is alive. They are basically just a machine at that point because they are unable to live on their own. Usualy people are put on life support until the family of the patient is ready to let the patient go officially, which is when the patient is taken of life support.

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adviceman49 answered Thursday August 5 2010, 8:40 am:
I am a great deal older than most of the advisers on this site, so my advice will be somewhat different from what you have received and may continue to receive from others.

I’m not a Doctor and I cannot answer your question from a doctor’s point of view. I am a member of a county fire department rescue squad. One of the service’s we supply is advance life support ambulance service, which is part of the 911 service.

Many times we in the field start life support when we insert breathing tubes and start IV’s. We so this to give the patient every chance at life and to maintain life while we transport the patient to the hospital. I believe the doctors use life support to give the body time to heal. Life support machines take the work load of the body’s organs and give the body time to heal. Sometimes it is done to give the family time to come to grip with the reality of the situation as we maintain the body long after what we know as life has stopped.

Not knowing the situation with your grandma I cannot really say or speculate as to what is going on. If grandma’s brain is functioning, the doctors’ will tell you this, then life as we know it is still there. Talk to her, read to her, tell her how much you love her and urge her to come back to you. She may be in a coma but there is some science that suggests strongly that people in comas do hear us when we talk to them. Play her favorite music, fix her hair, hold her hand and let her know you are with her.

The best thing that will happen is the love and affection will help her come back to you. The worst thing will be she will die comfortably with the comfort of her loved ones near her.

I hope for the best outcome.

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Advicelady6798 answered Thursday August 5 2010, 8:37 am:
When people are put on life support, it means they can't breathe by themselves so they have support to keep them alive. If after some time, the condition doesn't change lets say after three months, they will take life support off and let them die peacefully. Alot of individuals have controversy about whether to take someone off life support because techinically they are the ones ending the life, but also in the same aspect by keeping them on life support, they making them suffer by keeping them alive. It depends on the person and the situation whether they will take life support off or on, it is the choice of the family member in charger, not the doctors orders. If the family requests it to stay on and they are the gaurdian in charge they will or they will listen when they say to take them off.

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