Man declared dead snores to life right before autopsy - KMOV.com

Man declared dead snores to life right before autopsy

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CBS NEWS -- A man in Spain who was declared dead by three doctors was actually still alive, which doctors discovered only when he began snoring on the autopsy table, according to news reports.

The man, 29-year-old Gonzalo Montoya Jiménez, was a prisoner at a jail in northern Spain. He was found unconscious in his cell on Sunday and was believed to be dead, according to the Spanish news outlet La Voz de Asturias. Three forensic doctors allegedly examined Jiménez and certified his death.

But four hours later, right before Jiménez's autopsy, he was heard making noises on the autopsy table, and was found to still be alive. This discovery was not a moment too soon — Jiménez's body even had the marks painted on it to guide the autopsy, a family member told La Voz de Asturias.

He has now regained consciousness and is in the intensive care unit at the Central University Hospital of Asturias (HUCA) in Oviedo, Spain.

But how, exactly, does something like this happen?

Determining whether someone is dead or alive might sound simple enough, but there are not universal guidelines for exactly when doctors should pronounce someone dead. "You're dead when a doctor says you're dead," Dr. James Bernat, a neurologist at Dartmouth College's Geisel School of Medicine in New Hampshire, told Live Science in a 2014 interview.

Click here for more information from CBS News.

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