Dying is not scary: scientists for the first time saw what the brain experiences during death
The first-ever recording of a dying brain has shown that we can relive some of our best memories in our final moments. The Sun.
Scientists accidentally filmed our most complex organ as it went offline, revealing an amazing snapshot of death.
The patient was treated for epilepsy, his brain was connected to an electroencephalogram (EEG). An 87-year-old man was being measured for brain activity when he suddenly had a heart attack and died.
This meant that the 15 minutes before his death were recorded on an EEG.
Within 30 seconds, an increase in very specific brain waves was seen.
These waves, known as gamma waves, are associated with things like memory recovery, meditation, and dreaming.
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This could mean—although more research is needed—that we might see a sort of film of our best memories as we die.
The parts of the brain that were activated in this study also suggest that we could enter a peaceful, sleep-like state that is comparable to meditation.
Surprisingly, when our bodies shut down, our brains can still work hard on the last task, which makes the death process less grim.
Dr. Ajmal Zemmar, a neurosurgeon at the University of Louisville-Zemmar who organized the study, said: “Through generating oscillations associated with memory retrieval, the brain can recall last memories of important life events just before our death, similar to those reported in near-death experiences. . These findings challenge our understanding of exactly when life ends and raise important follow-up questions, such as those related to the timing of organ donation.”
Similar changes in brain waves have been observed in rats at death, but never before in humans.
The study, published in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, says: "Our data provide the first evidence of a dying human brain in a non-experimental, real-life emergency clinical setting and confirm that the human brain may have the ability to generate coordinated activities in the pre-mortem period."
However, this is just one study with a brain already damaged by epilepsy. But it could pave the way for a better understanding of what happens to us and what we think about when we die.
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But Dr. Zemmar added: "What we can learn from this study is that although our loved ones close their eyes and are ready to go to eternal rest, their brains can replay some of the most enjoyable moments they have experienced in their lives."
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