Talented canoeist Catarina Sequeira, 26, had been declared brain dead (read our reports of brain death controversy) after she suffered an acute asthma attack at her home when she was 19 weeks’ pregnant. Earlier this year Catarina gave birth a healthy child in Sao Joan Hospital in Oporto, after almost 32 weeks of pregnancy. The baby was born weighing 1.7 kg, an “acceptable” weight for his gestational age. Salvador, as the child was named, needed respiratory support at birth, although this is common in babies born at 32 weeks. This is the first baby born from a brain dead mother in São João Hospital, Oporto.

Three more cases we have reported of pregnant women declared brain dead Muñoz was 33-years-old and 14-weeks pregnant when she was declared dead using neurological criteria. Benson was 32-years-old and 22-weeks pregnant and the case, also in Portugal, at  Lisboa Central Hospital.

Our comment on brain dead gestational mother

In consideration of this phenomena, should be reconsidered the argument of “lack of bodily integration” in patients diagnosticated with the current criteria of ‘brain death.’?


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