The Nation

The family of a 56-year-old comatose woman can order doctors to remove the feeding tube keeping her alive and grant what relatives say would have been her wish to die, a judge ruled. Carol McConnell, who suffered permanent brain damage in a car accident three years ago, remains in a coma at a Danbury, Conn., nursing home. She can breathe but is fed by a tube connected to her stomach. Doctors said she will die if the tube is removed. Superior Court Judge Anne C. Dranginis gave the defendants, including the state attorney general's office, 20 days to appeal. During a June trial, lawyers for the state argued that a 1985 statute on the removal of life-support systems prohibits withholding "nutrition and hydration."

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