'Near-death experience' explained by carbon dioxide: Study

`Near-death experience` explained by carbon dioxide: Study
Paris: People who have "near-death
experiences," such as flashing lights, feelings of peace and
joy and divine encounters before they pull back from the brink
may simply have raised levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the
blood, a study suggests.

Near-death experiences (NDEs) are reported by between 11
and 23 per cent of survivors of heart attacks, according to
previous research.
But what causes NDEs is strongly debated. Some pin the
mechanisms on physical or psychological reasons, while others
see a transcendental force.

Researchers in Slovenia, reporting on Thursday in a
peer-reviewed journal, Critical Care, investigated 52
consecutive cases of heart attacks in three large hospitals.

The patients` average age was 53 years. Forty-two of them
were men.

Eleven patients had NDEs, but there was no common link
between these cases in terms of age, sex, level of education,
religious belief, fear of death, time to recovery or the drugs
that were administered to resuscitate them.

Instead, a common association was high levels of CO2 in
the blood and, to a lesser degree, of potassium.
Further work is needed to confirm the findings among a
larger sample of patients, say the authors, led by Zalika
Klemenc-Ketis of the University of Maribor.