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Critical Care Research and Practice
Volume 2012, Article ID 624724, 13 pages
Review Article

Mindsight: Diagnostics in Disorders of Consciousness

1Coma Science group, Cyclotron Research Center and Department of Neurology, University of Liège and University Hospital of Liège, Sart-Tilman B30, 4000 Liège, Belgium
2BRAINlab, Department of Neuroscience and Pharmacology, Panum Institute, University of Copenhagen, 2200 Copenhagen, Denmark

Received 31 January 2012; Revised 30 April 2012; Accepted 8 July 2012

Academic Editor: Romergryko G. Geocadin

Copyright © 2012 P. Guldenmund et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Diagnosis of patients with disorders of consciousness (comprising coma, vegetative state/unresponsive wakefulness syndrome, and minimally conscious state) has long been dependent on unstandardized behavioral tests. The arrival of standardized behavioral tools, and especially the Coma Recovery Scale revised, uncovered a high rate of misdiagnosis. Ancillary techniques, such as brain imaging and electrophysiological examinations, are ever more often being deployed to aid in the search for remaining consciousness. They are used to look for brain activity patterns similar to those found in healthy controls. The development of portable and cheaper devices will make these techniques more widely available.