‘Dead’ man comes alive at Mumbai hospital mortuary

Updated on Oct 13, 2015 09:20 AM IST
A 50-year-old homeless man was on Sunday afternoon wheeled into the mortuary of Sion hospital after being declared dead, only for an attendant to realise a few minutes later that he was alive
Sion hospital, Mumbai.(Pic for representation)
Sion hospital, Mumbai.(Pic for representation)
Hindustan Times | By, Mumbai

Authorities at a Mumbai hospital were stunned to discover that a 50-year-old homeless man wheeled into the mortuary after being declared dead was still alive.

Officials at the hospital in Sion area have ordered a probe into the incident that occurred on Sunday afternoon.

Suleman Merchant, dean of the hospital, said, “The patient was on a stretcher and his face and ear was infested with maggots, usually seen in decomposed bodies. He was apparently picked up from a bus stop at Sion.”

He added: “His pulse and heartbeat were absent. The patient also had fixed dilated pupils, a condition common in patients who are close to death. This could have led the doctor to believe that the patient was dead.”

The man, identified only as Prakash, was brought to the hospital by policemen who insisted he was dead. He was sent to the mortuary for an autopsy. An attendant at the mortuary realised the man was alive after he detected some movement.

Doctors resuscitated the man for 15 minutes and shifted him to the hospital’s medical intensive care unit. The man is recuperating but continues to be in a delirious state caused by severe intoxication.

Blaming the police for the error, Merchant said, “As police officers were on bandobast duty, instead of bringing the patient inside, they asked the doctor to examine him outside the casualty.

“Our casualty medical officer got intimidated by the police presence. The police kept telling the doctor the patient was dead and insisted he certify him urgently.”

Deputy commissioner of police Dhananjay Kulkarni said police were looking into the allegations of lapses by policemen. “Based on the findings of the investigation, the further course of action will be decided,” said a police officer.

When a patient is declared dead by a medical officer, the body is usually kept in the casualty section or a ward for about two hours – known as the cooling off period.

“In this case, the casualty was full and so the body was sent to the mortuary, where it would have been kept for two hours. The patient is receiving the best possible care,” said Merchant.

He said doctors treat about 188,000 patients every year in the hospital’s casualty ward.

“After this incident, we have realised that in such odd cases, we need to perform an ECG to check the heartbeat before declaring a person dead. We are coming up with a protocol to avoid such incidents in the future. No action has been initiated against the casualty officer,” said Merchant.

Close Story

Less time to read?

Try Quickreads

  • So far, the police has not filed any FIR on the incident.

    Two city churches robbed of cash, valuables this week

    Mumbai: Two incidents of robberies were reported in two churches in Mumbai this week. St Anne's Church at Nesbit Road in Mazgaon was robbed of cash and offerings on August 9, while another theft was reported at St Joseph's Church in Vikhroli on August 7. So far, the police has not filed any FIRs on the incident. Barret also said that the donations made for the poor were stolen.

  • Ashish Shelar, 49, BJP legislator from Bandra west and Shiv Sena’s bete noire, will take the charge of the post from Mumbadevi MLA Mangal Prabhat Lodha (Praful Gangurde/HT Photo)

    BJP appoints Ashish Shelar as its Mumbai unit chief, Chandrashekhar Bawankule to head state unit

    Mumbai: Bharatiya Janata Party national president JP Nadda on Friday announced the appointment of Bandra MLA Ashish Shelar as the party's Mumbai unit chief. OBC leader Chandrashekar Bawankule was named the head of the Maharashtra BJP. Party national general secretary Arun Singh issued a letter from Delhi to announce the appointments. Shelar is second term MLA from Bandra and had a short stint as school education and sports minister in the Fadnavis government in 2019.

  • Optical photograph of the cluster of galaxies, whose central giant elliptical galaxy (white elliptical patch) is the parent of the radio lobes shown in red. The blue region displays the halo of X-ray emission due to the hot gas associated with this cluster of galaxies and has an overall size of 1.7 million light-years. (SOURCES)

    GMRT discovers oldest known fossil radio galaxy trapped inside cluster of galaxies

    A team of Indian astronomers led by Dr Surajit Paul of the Savitribai Phule Pune University has discovered extremely aged 'fossil lobes' of a once active radio galaxy. The pair of gigantic lobes of the radio galaxy spanning 1.2 million light-years is located inside the galaxy cluster Abell 980, and was formed about 260 million years ago.

  • Women taking out a Tiranga Yatra in Fatehgarh jail. They got the flags as gifts from their brothers in prison when they went to tie rakhi on Rakshabandhan. (HT)

    Fatehgarh jail inmates gift national flags to sisters

    Kanpur: Prisoners of Fatehgarh Central Jail gifted the national flags they made to their sisters who had come to tie rakhi on their wrists on Friday. The 1017 women then came out carrying the Tricolours, raising the slogan 'Bharat Mata ki Jai'. Jail superintendent Bhimsen Mukund said the gesture of prisoners of gifting the flags to their sisters turned the atmosphere in the jail patriotic.

  • Fergusson College’s cut-off for arts stream has dipped from 96.40 per cent to 96.20 per cent, and science stream has increased from 88 per cent to 94.40 per cent in the second round. (REPRESENTATIVE PHOTO)

    FYJC second merit list out, cut-offs drop in prominent colleges

    The second merit list for First Year Junior College (FYJC) online centralised admissions declared by the Director of Education (Secondary and Higher Secondary), Pune, on Friday sees drop in cut-off lists of top 10 colleges. The cut-off of Brihan Maharashtra College of Commerce which was 95 per cent in the first round has dropped to 94.60 per cent for commerce stream. For the academic year, 104,047 students registered for Class 11 admissions till now.

Story Saved
Saved Articles
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Saturday, August 13, 2022
Start 15 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now