By a Times staff writer
5:11 PM PST, December 23, 2013
An Alameda County judge Monday ordered a girl who became brain-dead after a tonsillectomy to be kept on a ventilator until Dec. 30.Judge Evelio Grillo extended a restraining order until next week and had appointed an independent physician to examine the girl, Jahi McMath, on Monday afternoon at the hospital.
The physician is scheduled to deliver the results Tuesday morning in court, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.
She was pronounced brain-dead soon after a routine procedure to remove her tonsils at Children’s Hospital & Research Center Oakland on Dec. 9.
After the girl went into cardiac arrest, the flow of oxygen to her brain was cut off and a CT scan showed two-thirds of her brain had swollen. She was declared brain-dead after three tests showed there was no "cerebral activity," according to court records.
The supervising doctor said in a court declaration that "there is absolutely no medical possibility" that Jahi's condition is reversible "or that she will someday recover from death."
David Durand, chief of pediatrics at the hospital, said in a statement that "we have the deepest sympathy for Jahi's mother, who wishes her daughter was alive."
But, he added, "The ventilator cannot reverse the brain death that has occurred, and it would be wrong to give false hope that Jahi will ever come back to life."Jahi's mother, Nailah Winkfield, who wore a T-shirt to Monday's hearing bearing a picture of her daughter and herself, and who periodically dabbed her eyes, said she believes her daughter "wants to live" and that the hospital should not "pull the plug," particularly before Christmas. She has said she believes God will "spark her brain awake."
The family's attorney, Christopher Dolan, said he wanted another examination of Jahi by Paul Byrne, a professor at the University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Science who has criticized the practice of declaring brain death, the Chronicle reported.
"The family believes she is alive," Dolan said. "It is our position that no doctor can make a determination about end of life without parental consent."
Supporters of the family staged a march starting outside the hospital, chanting, "Keep Jahi alive."
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