Stroke induced-coma

Patient

Q: What does it mean if someone had a stroke and is not awake and has massive brain damage to the back of the head and unresponsive pupils? she is breathing on her own though

Doctor

A:   Brain damage to the back of the brain may indicate a brainstem or vertebrobasilar stroke. A stroke results in sudden loss of focal brain function due to a blockage in the flow of oxygenated blood to the brain tissue or due to a bleed into the brain. The symptoms you describe suggest a comatose state, and improvement is seen with a variable response in patients. Following stroke patients often require ongoing, acute rehabilitation, with attention paid to specific patient issues and the formulation of short-term and long-term care plans. I would advise discussing your concerns with the attending physician to determine future care plans that are in the patients best interests.

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