Doctors at Loma Linda University Medical Center removed a brain-dead baby boy from life-support systems Saturday after a worldwide search failed to find recipients for his organs, a spokeswoman said. She said the decision to remove life support was made because the baby's organs were deteriorating rapidly, especially the liver.
Baby John was born anencephalic--with a brain stem but without the two cerebral hemispheres. He was declared brain-dead Wednesday night but was kept alive on a respirator in hopes of finding recipients for his organs.
Hospital spokeswoman Anita Rockwell said a worldwide search failed to find a recipient for the infant's heart. Four possible liver recipients were also found unsuitable and the organ began deteriorating, she said.
"Out of respect for the brain-dead infant and with the consent of his mother, Dr. Joyce Peabody removed artificial life support from Baby John," Rockwell said. The infant's heart stopped beating at 2:15 p.m.