Anoxic brain injury - how long does it take to ope... - Headway

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Anoxic brain injury - how long does it take to open eyes?

Angech profile image
Angech

My sister has an anoxic injury. Generalized ischemia or anoxic encephalitis from cardiac arrest. 8 weeks today and only opened her eyes briefly 2x. Just wondering if anyone knows of cases where ppl came around after 8 weeks. She was only sedated 3 days, but the seizure medicine keeps her sleepy for sure. Anyone have any anoxic stories they want to share?

12 Replies

I keep thinking of your sister and willing her on! No advice unfortunately as I am in a similar situation.

Sending love x

Thanks! How is mom doing? Do you know if they did brain stimulation on her? I saw a dr note on my sisters chart from 7 weeks ago mentioning that they tried. I was not informed of it. Maybe you can ask them.

I don’t think any brain stimulation has been attempted but I will ask the question. She is on seizure medication but we think she has started to have seizures now. I’m hoping the medication can be adjusted to prevent them. Still not really ‘awake’ and we just visit her everyday to try and stimulate her senses x

Hi! Glad you can visit. Are you using the youtube brain videos? There are videos on range of motion also. These are moving her arms and legs which helps.

I am so sick of drs writing that my sister only responds to pain. All we have to do is touch her gently and she moves. I keep picturing them torturing her. Today the nutritionists visited and did full exam and wrote she was "alert and oriented". There were other reports that said her exams don't really demonstrate anoxic damage to her cortical functioning. We have not yet spoken to the neurologist 2 months in. We leave messages, try to find them while there but they evade us. I never saw anything like this.

Your mom might be on keppra. My sister is on 500 mgs. 2x a day. It knocks her out. Might be doing the same to your mom too.

Is she responding at all? Prayers for your family are steady at my end! Keeping up hope. Hugs to you!

Hi, my husbands MRI shows Global Anoxic Injury. Drs are very pessimistic about him waking up or having any kind of recovery. He was sedated on 3/28 after cardiac arrest and was without oxygen about 40 minutes. Im searching for anoxic injury stories for some hope. How is your sister?

Angech profile image
Angech in reply to HeatherAz

Hello! Sorry to hear about your husband. Is he still sedated? Did they use an aed on him? I hear those cases wake up faster and do better. Did you get a copy of the mri report?

My sister, inspite of having 2 extra crashes due to hospital neglect, is fighting hard. She didn't wake up yet. She doesn't open her eyes, yesterday was 9 or 10 weeks. But she is making improvements since her last crash on 2/24. She is now hand squeezing, pulling me in and trying to use my arm as leverage to pull herself up. She has been blinking when i ask her to, she moves if you touch her, she tried to sit up 2 days ago. All with her eyes closed. Except the other day she tried to open them. I am trying to get an eye dr. to see her and neurologist. Anoxic patients make improvements if the docs work with them, even faster. I hope you have a good doctor who cares. All my best to you. What are they saying? Is he responding to you in any way?

HeatherAz profile image
HeatherAz in reply to Angech

Oh that is wonderful!! I would love for my husband to squeeze my hand right now! So as far as an AED I have no idea. I just re read one of the documents in his online chart and it doesnt mention it unless they call it something else im not very familiar with all the different medical terms. He was on 50mg of Propofol and they stopped it on 4/4 at 7:30 am and he has been unsedated since them but still asleep. The drs didnt give me a copy of the MRI but I saw the MRI document on that online chart of his I keep checking and I also recorded the images of the MRI he showed me. He is not responding to me at all in a purposful way right now but he is moving when I touch him and he reacts to the oral suctioning they do on him, he coughs and gets red. The Dr is saying that he may stay asleep like this forever and they asked if I want to remove the ventilator and let nature take its course. I said hell no its too soon. Ive also been looking at their reports in his chart and see some things that shouldnt be included for this poor prognosis their giving us. For instance his NSE is 53 but that was only 31 hours after cardiac arrest. They never retested and online I see the NSE should be done 48-72 hours after cardiac arrest. Also his eeg shows “abnormal due to low amplitude slowing consistent with diffuse cortical dysfunction. “ but they did the EEG on 4/3 when he was still sedated. I found online the EEG should not be used to determine prognosis if the patient is still sedated. So literally WTF are they doing why do they include the NSE and EEG as part of the poor prognosis!

Angech profile image
Angech in reply to HeatherAz

They play games. The eeg for my sister was also done the same day sedation was stopped and had diffuse slowing. Also said she was on seizure meds and that slows a person down. The docs even wrote on my sisters chart that she didn't exhibit the kind of damage the mri said she had. But he still wrote poor progress. Nothing has been done to help her brain at all. I am trying to get her into a coma bed but docs wont help. Xox if he is moving it is a good sign. It takes a while to wake up. Never give in to their whims of removal. Fight hard! Xoxo oh by the way they say all she is doing that i see as progress are reflexes. Unreal! By the way, what are the exact words on mri? Does it say anoxic?

HeatherAz profile image
HeatherAz in reply to Angech

It says “Diffuse increased cortical restricted diffusion within the bilateral frontal parietal and occipital lobes, compatible with global anoxic injury.”

Angech profile image
Angech in reply to HeatherAz

How is that considered global? That is the front of brain and eyes. Does he have edema? Naw, he will wake up. My sister is going on 10 weeks now not opening eyes but she is improving. Please never give in to them. All drs tell brain injury family members to take off life support. If you can visit him play the brain music on youtube. It stimulates the whole brain. m.youtube.com/watch?v=nnNx4...

Look for others also.

HeatherAz profile image
HeatherAz in reply to Angech

Hi Angech! Sorry for the delay in my response. Thank you for the video I will use that! He still isnt awake and they want to move him to a long term care hospital since I wont stop his breathing tube. They did a tracheotomy and tomorrow is the PEG. How is your sister?

Angech profile image
Angech in reply to HeatherAz

My sister didn't open her eyes yet. I think they missed her diagnosis. Something else is up with her brain, she has ischemia or narrow veins in her head. They completely ignore her brain. I am trying to get her into a brain injury hospital which is what you need to do also. It is very early for your husband. The brain needs time to heal. My sister can't open her eyes but she is holding our hand and giving us hints she is in there. The last 2 weeks the nurses are telling us she helps them by moving her body to let them get in areas for blood pressure. They ask her to blink and she blinks. But a neurologist hasn't seen her since 2/5 and the drs say when her health gets better they will have her checked. They play games and are supposed to help me get her to the right brain place but they won't. Covid seems to be keeping the hospitals in good funds do the heck with everyone else. Not right. If your husband is on seuzure meds it knocks them out. Can you see him? How is his health otherwise? She went downhill after the trach and peg was put in. Many infections from it. Keep fighting, it takes a long time to heal. Xo

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