Judge rules heart attack victim who is critically ill in hospital should be ...

A judge has ruled that a heart attack victim who is critically ill should be allowed to die following a legal battle between his wife and his mother.  

The patient, a middle-aged man identified only as 'RS' due to an anonymity order, suffered a cardiac arrest in November last year, during which his heart stopped for at least 45 minutes, causing 'severe and irreversible' brain damage.  

On December 15, a judge ruled that it was 'not in RS's best interests' to have his life sustained through medical treatment, including nutrition and hydration, and that 'such treatment could be lawfully discontinued'.  

Mr Justice Cohen said that RS should be provided with palliative care to make sure he 'retained the greatest dignity and suffered the least discomfort until such time as his life comes to an end'. 

The University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust is now permitted to withdraw life-sustaining treatment to RS, as of 4 pm on January 7, the Court of Protection has decided.   

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The application to bring RS's life to an end was supported by his wife, but opposed by his mother, who lives in Poland, as well as his two sisters and niece. 

RS's mother, whose name cannot be published under the court order, said she was 'devastated' over the ruling, saying that British authorities are trying to bring in 'euthanasia by a back door.'  

The applicant, a middle-aged man identified only as 'RS' due to an anonymity order, suffered a cardiac arrest on November 6 last year, during which his heart stopped for at least 45 minutes, causing ' severe and irreversible' brain damage (stock image)

The applicant, a middle-aged man identified only as 'RS' due to an anonymity order, suffered a cardiac arrest on November 6 last year, during which his heart stopped for at least 45 minutes, causing ' severe and irreversible' brain damage (stock image) 

RS had not been responsive to stimuli of any sort following the cardiac arrest, although he did spontaneously open and move his eyes but without fixing or tracking, the court heard.

He showed no characteristic features of discomfort or distress to stimuli which would be painful to a feeling person.  

'It was self-evident that RS lacked capacity to make any decision for himself,' the judge said in his ruling.  

'The

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