Ways to die.

i was wondering if any one can think of a way someone can die that is not ultimately lack of oxygen to the brain. That could be the cause of death in ANY given scenario. If you can think of another way to expire, please let me know.

Jumping off a very tall building?

Bullet to the head?


Having your head chopped off?

There are many.

Well, getting your brain blown to tiny little bits is one. There is no brain to lack oxygen.

I would guess being instantly incinerated by being propelled into say, the sun, would not involve a lack of oxygen to the brain, so much as the near-instantaneous destruction of the brain itself (and everything else).

If you mean “brain death” then no. The brain is technically still alive until the support for it can no longer support it. The brain would be alive for a short time after support stops in all but the most extreme trauma situations. Like a helicopter blade to the skull or something like that.

being caught up in the pyroclastic flow of a volcano. Your brain would probably boil and burst before you realized what the hell happened your ice-cream

If you jump off of a very tall building, then you are crushed, which means you are not getting oxygen to you brain due to no organs functioning, etc. If you have you head blown off by a bullett, your brain is now on the wall and not getting oxygen other that ambient oxygen in the air. If you are electrocuted then your heart, and everything else cease to work, hence, no oxygen getting to the brain. If your head is chopped off, then obviously no blood can be pumped to it. These all are good examples, but all ultimatley are the result of lack of oxygen to the brain. There may be other contributing factors, but the ultimate cause of death is ALWAYS lack of oxygen to the brain. That would be why we can have people in a vetgetative state when their organs cease to function. The only organ essential to life is the brain. The rest can be duplicated, through various medical procedures.

Nope. If your brain is splattered all over the sidewalk, lack of oxygen is the least of your worries.

acid bath, or shower rather, which results in instant melting? cause of death: melted brain (plus everything else) rather than lack of oxygen.
for instance, super concentrated sulphuric or hydrochloric acid.

I think you’re arguing semantics, here. Sure, your brain doesn’t get any oxygen pumped to it when it’s splattered on the wall, but I doubt the coroner is going to list “lack of oxygen flow to the brain” as the cause of death…

What if you were to run a tube from an very-high-pressure oxgen cylinder into your skull and opened the valve. That’d probably kill you.

I do agree that it is a matter of semantics, and I am not saying that the coroner will always list that, I am only saying that a lazy coroner with no ethics could viably list lack of oxygen to the brain as the cause of death in any of the given scenarios. It is the lack of oxygen to the brain that is the penultimate cause of death. The rest of these things listed are merely causes of the oxygen not reaching the brain.

What about a virus that kills nerve cells? Or a toxin that kills nerve cells, injected directly into the brain?

Of course, it depends on your definition of death.

First, as someone else said – if there is no brain to receive oxygen in the first place, then you’re dead, and oxygen has played no part. Therefore getting your head smashed or blown to bits are, of course, valid options.

Second, what about breathing 100% oxygen? Doesn’t that cause death?

If you are the victim of a virus that kills nerve cells, then the nerves that cause the heart and lung to function will surely be effected, and thereby not working and not getting oxygen to the brain. If you have a high pressure tube of oxygen stuck in your brain, the oxygen would not be carried by the red blood cells, and would not be of any benefit to the brain. And the pressure could cause your head to explode, hence the before mentioned lack of blood flowing to your brain spattered on the walls.

the brian needs other stuff besies oxygen. simple deny it everything but oxygen

Cerebral hypoxia is what the OP is on about, and I too have seen this ‘fact’ mentioned as the only reason we all die.

The method of how the hypoxia comes about is obviously of much more interest (to pathologists anyway) than the fact of oxygen deprivation to the brain, but the OP may be technically correct. (From references mentioned in books I have read). But it is a rather useless distinction, really.

If you magically inserted an lump of anti-matter of the equivilant mass as the brain into the same cavity so that they auto-annihilated, there can no longer be any brain in which to lack oxygen.

Actually, there were several hundred (if not thousand) people at ground zero for the Hiroshima and Nagasaki nuclear explosions who were vaporized within milliseconds (most of the casualties, I gather, were from the shockwave and flying debris and radiation and whatnot that followed the blast), so it’s not necessary to make up insta-death hypotheticals involving the sun and anti-matter and whatnot.

How about Cerebral HYPER-oxia?

Above a certain pressure, pure oxygen is actually toxic.