Communication station: The scenario  was as follows:

'You are the consultant for your intensive care unit. One of the patients, David Cullen, had brain death confirmed yesterday by clinical testing performed by two of your colleagues who have gone off duty. Brain death had complicated a subarachnoid haemorrhage, which occurred two days earlier.

Information handed over to you by your colleague:

• Sarah Cullen (David's daughter) is the patient's only living relative; • She has only just arrived yesterday from England and was informed of the diagnosis by your colleague.

• She was devastated by the news and does not accept the diagnosis.

• She has demanded that everything be done to keep her father "alive"

A nuclear medicine which your colleague organised has just been completed, and it clearly demonstrates the absence of intracranial blood flow. Sarah is in this room. She is aware that another test was being done today. You are required to explain to her the results of the test and discuss with her David's clinical condition and next steps to be employed.'

Disclaimer: the viva stem above may be an original CICM stem, acquired from their publicly available past papers. Or, perhaps it is a slightly altered version of the original CICM stem. Or, it is a completely original viva stem, concocted by the monstrously amoral author of Deranged Physiology for nothing more than his own personal amusement. In either case, because the college do not make the main viva text or marking criteria available, almost everything here has been confabulated. It might sound like a plausible viva and it could be used for the purpose of practice, but all should be aware that it does not represent the "true" canonical CICM viva station.