Brain-damaged patient in French right-to-die case passes away after treatment is withdrawn

Medical experts said Lambert, paralyzed in a road accident in 2008, was in an irreversible vegetative state with no chance of recovering. He had almost no consciousness but could breathe without a respirator and occasionally moved his eyes.

The decision whether to keep the 42-year-old alive split his family and sparked a nationwide debate. Lambert’s wife says her husband told her before the accident that he would not want to be kept alive under such conditions. 




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However, no written proof of that directive existed, leading to a lengthy and brutal legal battle between his wife, several siblings and nephews, against his mother, father and other Catholic relatives who fought to keep him alive. 

Lambert’s parents said a “state crime” had been committed when France’s highest court ruled that his care could be terminated. While euthansia is illegal in France, doctors are permitted to put terminally-ill patients into deep sedation until death.

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