Persistent vegetative state: An ethical reappraisal

Daniela Tarquini, Maria Congedo, Fabio Formaglio, Maddalena Gasparini, Norina Marcello, Corinna Porteri, Eugenio Pucci, Silvia Zullo, Carlo A. Defanti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


New knowledge from scientific research on vegetative state (VS) and its consequences in clinical practice are reviewed. The ambiguity of the concept of consciousness and the difficult issue of its moral significance are then examined. The Authors stress the need for longitudinal prognostic studies, the promotion of an expert widespread use of standardized behavioural scales, and recommend that the ethical debate about VS rely upon the widest consensus of the scientific community.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)695-700
Number of pages6
JournalNeurological Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2012


  • Consciousness theories
  • Disability evaluation
  • End-of-life treatments
  • Ethics
  • Functional neuroimaging
  • Vegetative state

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Dermatology


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