Coma is a lengthy state of unconsciousness that can be brought on by a number of different things, including but not limited to a blow to the head, a stroke, a brain tumour, an overdose of drugs or alcohol, or an underlying medical condition like diabetes or an infection.
A coma requires immediate medical attention. There needs to be quick response in order to save lives and prevent brain damage. In order to pinpoint the root of the coma and begin treatment, doctors typically run a battery of blood tests and a brain scan.
Comas typically end within a few weeks. Long-term unconsciousness increases the risk of developing permanent neurological damage or death.
Some of the most prevalent warning signs of a coma are:
- Eyes shut
- Reduced activity of brainstem reflexes, leading to symptoms like non-reacting pupils.
- Except for involuntary reflexes, there is no limb reaction.
- Without the ability to respond intentionally to unpleasant stimuli, only reflexes are present.
- Abnormal respiration
What constitutes a need for medical attention
Comas are a serious medical situation. The coma patient needs emergency medical attention.
Comas can be brought on by a variety of medical issues. A few illustrations are:
Brain damage caused by trauma: These are typically the result of car accidents or violent activities.
Stroke: Stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is impeded or interrupted for any reason (such as due to blocked arteries or a burst blood vessel).
Tumors: Comas are a common symptom of brain and brainstem tumours.
Diabetes: Comas can result from either high (hyperglycemia) or low (hypoglycemia) blood sugar.
Lack of Oxygen: People who have been resuscitated after a heart attack or who have been rescued from drowning may not wake up if their brains have not received enough oxygen.
Infections: Various infections, including encephalitis and meningitis, can lead to an enlarged brain, spinal cord, or the tissues surrounding the brain. When these infections reach a critical stage, they can cause brain damage or even coma.
Seizures: Continued seizure activity is associated with an increased risk of developing coma.
Toxins: Brain injury and comas can result from exposure to toxic substances like carbon monoxide or lead.
Alcohol and Other Drugs: Coma is a possible outcome of drug or alcohol overdose.
Some people recover fully from comas, while others remain in a vegetative condition or pass away. People who recover from comas are at increased risk of developing permanent or temporary impairments.
Complications, such as pressure sores, urinary tract infections, and blood clots in the legs, can arise at any time during a coma.