When Sherman Sizemore underwent surgery in 2006, two types of anesthesia were required for the operation, paralytic agents, to prevent him from moving or speaking during the operation, and inhalation anesthesia which would make him lose consciousness and prevent him from feeling the pain of the surgery. The first was administered correctly, but the second was not.
Sixteen minutes into the surgery the medical team realized that he was still awake. The inhalational anesthesia, along with another drug intended to induce amnesia were given at that point, but Mr Sizemore experienced nearly a half hour of surgery, complete with pain, while fully conscious. He was never told what happened. Although he was unable to point to a concrete memory of the incident, something was clearly wrong. With no prior history of psychiatric or psychological conditions, Sizemore was suddenly panicked. He thought that people were trying to bury him alive, and suffered from insomnia and nightmares. He committed suicide just weeks after the surgery, but his family did not fully make the connection between the surgery and his psychological struggles until a doctor mentioned the possibility while offering his condolences, prompting a closer look at his medical records.
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