The mysterious anecdote was shared by Dr Bruce Greyson, professor emeritus of psychiatry and neurobehavioural sciences at the University of Virginia, in his book, ‘After: A Skeptical Scientist’s Journey to Understand Life and Beyond’, which looks at NDEs. The woman, named Holly, was treated by the medic while he was serving as a trainee psychiatrist.
Dr Greyson was called to Virginia to treat Holly after she overdosed in her dormitory.
He asked the 20-year-old student’s roommate, named Susan, what she had overdosed on at a hospital interview room down the corridor from the comatose Holly.
But when she awoke the next day, Holly told Dr Greyson: “I know who you are.
“I remember you from last night.”
Holly told the trainee medic she had “followed” him and Susan into the interview room, and floated over them as they talked.
According to Dr Greyson, Holly was able to recount he and Susan’s entire conversation despite not talking to her roommate since before the overdose.
She eerily pointed out Dr Greyson “had a red stain on” his tie while talking to Susan.
Dr Greyson said in his book, an except of which was published by the Daily Mail, he spilled tomato sauce down his tie the morning of the overdose.
He also added about Holly: “My immediate reaction was almost terror: This can’t be happening.
“After a few days, I thought this couldn’t have happened. It must be some trick that people played on me.”
The author also detailed other NDEs, including a 56-year-old lorry driver who recalled watching his own quadruple coronary bypass surgery, after having a massive heart attack at work.
Al Sullivan recalled his eyes were taped shut, his chest was cut open and his heart was exposed in an operating facility, as well as seeing a man dressed as a surgeon pacing around the room mimicking a chicken with his arm movement.
When he confronted the surgeon later about the chicken dance, they snapped back: “Who told you about that?
“I must have done something right, because you’re still here, aren’t you?”
Dr Greyson then called the surgeon, who confirmed the event.
NDEs have been subject to debate from the science community, with some regarding the visions as hallucinations where others believe the experiences are spiritual.
Dr Greyson admits he does not know what causes NDEs, but dismissed suggestions they are caused by a drop in oxygen levels, electrical activity in the brain or as a result of the powerful drugs given to patients.
He said: “I think the evidence overwhelmingly points to the physical body not being all that we are.
“There seems to be something that is able to continue after the body dies. I don’t know what to make of it.”
Dr Greyson also claimed around five percent of people have NDEs, and said those who go through them are often happier for it.
He said: “The experience can totally transform someone’s attitudes and behaviour for decades after. I don’t know of anything else so powerful.”
The author also said of his book: “It is my hope that learning about near-death experiences will also give you the spark to reevaluate your life and reconnect with the things that fill your life with ever greater meaning and joy.”