Terrifying dreams in induced coma: Thinking I had... - ICUsteps


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Terrifying dreams in induced coma

Mindgames profile image

Thinking I had acute bronchitis, flu, fever, etc., I was taken to ER by my daughter. Barely breathing I remember ambulance ride to requested hospital breathing with oxygen. Once admitted I have no memory except for Vivid Terrifying Dreams! I later learned I had been placed in ICU with double pneumonia, heart failure, ARDS. I was put into induced coma for weeks while on a ventilator. The dreams I had were so real! The nurses had a plan to kill me, I had such an Aura around me that was a deep pink color as well as hearing conversations that proved to me that I was going to be murdered! To this day I still cannot figure out why I experienced these hallucinations. What drugs are used to induce coma, etc. I am so thankful to be alive and am grateful for the wonderful medical team I had in ICU! Just have such recollection as if this just happened. No one understands.

17 Replies

I understand what ur going thru. I,too was in a medically induced coma for 3 days( massive heartattack&died). Unlike u I have absolutely no memory of the whole experience. U being in a coma for weeks must be freighting and confusing!

I believe ( as I am not. Dr) that the amount of drugs given in such large amounts has too really mess up ur dreams & any thoughts u may remember! Since I have no memory; which for me is so difficult as I want to remember dying coma etc. I can’t get any answers and nobody understands...

Just want to let u know that I do understand .. this is a very confusing frustrating and scary journey.. keep reaching out..

Thank you for taking time to respond to my post. I can only relate to not remembering anything at all once I was out of ambulance and admitted! I never even realized the severity of my condition. But Thank GOD you survived! I lost my mom & brother from massive heart attack. I will share that my grandmother has massive heart attack and like you they brought her back! The 1st question I asked her was "Gramma, did you see a tunnel of light"? She said no, she didn't remember anything except those paddles used to resesitate her! Promise me you'll never let them do that again, it felt like a sledge hammer! Please take care of yourself and if you need someone to talk to, I'm here! Good night

If you look at the different sedatives used, some are hallucinogenic. It is also the brain in stress trying to rationalise what is going on, the effects of the toxins left in your body by whatever medical conditions you have. The kidneys and liver often aren’t functioning fully whilst on life support, so you are not flushing out toxins & sedatives quickly. We also have had no proper sleep - being sedated is not sleep...alien environment, unpleasant procedures etc etc all combine to send the mind into free fall as it realises it is under attack.

Mindgames profile image
Mindgames in reply to Sepsur

Thank you for your reply. Makes sense since I aspirated too. Then turned into ARDS. I have moved on physically but mentally I seem to be stuck in a vortex almost with flashbacks of same dreams that occurred. I sometimes question my family to see what they remember or if it was a dream! Mostly I get a fair response that I was very ill and nurses said it was body responding to fighting bacteria/infection. I agree with you, alien invasion seems more appropriate! LOL

Sepsur profile image
Sepsur in reply to Mindgames

The rule of thumb is ....if you have a symptom that will not go away....SEEK HELP. Somethings won’t mend on their own.

EEBB profile image
EEBB in reply to Sepsur

Totally agree Sepsur. We delayed my seeing the Doctor over the Christmas period as they were busy and the news was telling everyone to "stay away"...……. what a mistake we made I only just survived pneumonia and Sepsis. I was in an induced coma for three weeks and had terrible hallucinations. Even when moved onto ordinary ward I was insisting that my socks were electric and I had to go on military manoeuvres every Sunday. Good job my husband got reassurance from the Doctor that this was normal.

Sepsur profile image
Sepsur in reply to EEBB

There is a dark humour to it all isn’t there

I was the same when in an induced coma I had what I called a "Second life" and with all the drugs they put you on seem to upset the mind. Worst part is when you are not sure if it is real or not. I can still recall what happened to me and it was back in 2008?

Be Well

Dear Mindgames,

All the dreams/nightmares and hallucinations you suffered are sadly very common to ICU patients.. It's caused by Delirium, a mix of drugs given, your organs and brain "failing" as close to death and trying to make sense of it all..It generally fades progressively as the patient gets better but some people can still suffer Post-traumatic disorder afterwards.. It's quite understandable after what you go through in ICU..See your Doctor and maybe try to get refer to a Psychologist or for some CBT which is known to help dealing with the aftermath of it all.

Wishing you all the best in your recovery.

Hi Mindgames -

In December 2012 I began feeling unwell , my wife who was at work at the time phoned our Doctor who diagnosed Sepsis - an Ambulance and our GP came to our house and I was taken to our local hospital - I remember waving to my wife as I was wheeled in and that was when I too was put into an induced coma . My lungs and my only kidney stopped working and my wife was told that if I didn't get taken to an ICU I would die - It was snowing in Inverness so it was decided that I would be flown to Paisley , a six hour drive for my wife . I was on a Life Support Machine and a Dialysis machine for 3 weeks - I came out of the coma after 4 weeks but spent a week talking gibberish . While in a coma I suffered several cardiac arrests , the second arrest lasted quite a long time , several minutes , the Doctors told my wife that should I live I would suffer from brain damage - my wife asked the Doctors if there was any hope - they said that she should prepare the family for my death - they then agreed to insert a temporary pacemaker but warned my wife that the procedure could kill me . I was very very ill . My heart continued to stop but the pacemaker did its job , the Doctors then told my wife that there might come a time when they wouldn't be able to revive me , it was all very bleak and my poor family could only wait to see if I recovered . As you can see I did but it was touch and go for a while .

While my family suffered the worst thing that happened to me were the recurring nightmares - they weren't like normal nightmares - when you have a nightmare you wake up , your heart racing , with this type of dream there's no waking up , it feels like real life , it feels as though it's actually happening to you . In my case I thought I'd been sectioned and taken to a place of recovery but I was kidnapped by this gang who sexually assaulted me whilst being restrained . What was happening in real life was I was taking the tubes out of my mouth and it took 2 Nurses to hold me down while a third replaced the breathing tubes - I was dreaming the tubes were worm like creatures going into me , the ' sexual assault ' must have been a suppository being inserted .

So vivid were my fever dreams that I told the Consultant that I was raped by this gang before contracting sepsis - He told me to report the incident when I got home ! Then the following day another Doctor came to see me and asked me if I could have dreamt all this - The dreams continued to affect me when I came home from hospital - after 12 months past I asked to see a Psychologist but I didn't give the treatment enough time to work and cancelled the appointment .

It's been 5 years now since I came home , I spent a total of 3 months in hospital - I know I'm a very very lucky man and despite not being a religious man I say a little ' Thank You ' each night .

I can still remember the Terror Dreams that I experiened in 2013 vividly - there is more to them than I described here but I didn't want to make my story any longer than it is !

What we have to remember is they were only dreams , the real terrifying thing is how close I came to death , I think about that almost every night .

What I found that helped me the most was writing about it , this place and Sepsis UK helps me get it out of my system , a problem shared and all that .

Like you I can only remember being wheeled into an ambulance and then nothing until waking from an induced coma ten or eleven days later. I was 31 days in ICU and the entire period was one of strange, terrifying dreams and hallucinations mingled with my times of waking, so that I couldn't distinguish between them. A few months after my release from hospital I wrote down the memories of my dreams as a form of self-healing. I think most people who've been through this kind of experience suffer from PTSD to some extent. I'm more than three years down the line now and the dreams are fading the same way as 'real' memories, but I can still clearly recall many of the episodes.

Hope all goes well for you.

ComaBoy profile image
ComaBoy in reply to stevet11753

I too was in an induced 11 day medically induced coma. I don’t remember anything

I don't understand "nobody understands" Why not? Why are post ICU, induced coma survivors not told why they experienced such vivid dreams, paranoia, fear of being murdered, time dilation, dimensional slippage, profound encounters with 'angels' 'demons', even God, etc, when the answer is so simple?? The drugs used to induce coma are all powerful psychedelics, ketamine, fentanyl, propofol, diamorphine, etc., etc., the list goes on. Basically you were, and maybe still are, tripping. Flashbacks and opiate triggered dreams and nightmares are commonly reported by coma survivors so why are they not appropriately informed and counselled by those that administered the drugs? Any casual or recreational psycho active drug user, LSD, DMT, etc., would recognise and identify your experience and symptoms in a moment so why are medics and clinicians so reluctant to inform and educate coma survivors? If you ever find out let me know. I don't.

Hi I know what your going through I was in a coma for over a week in 2016 with sepsis pneumonia and life threatening asthma it was the worst experience of my life and still is i suffer from ptsd now and it’s just so hard trying to look after 4 kids hope your on the mend soon it does get a bit better if you speak about it more good luck

Thank god i find this site four years out of a coma and still dont no which world im living in had very bad nightmares when i was in coma but still can not find any answer feel like im on my own

mdinspain profile image
mdinspain in reply to Nod1959

Hi, sorry this reply comes to you so late. The response by Comadreams is the "why" - a powerful combination of drugs. My own nightmares were almost exactly as described by Comadreams. Coming up to 6 years later, I can still remember them vividly although now I have to make an effort and they don't come of their own accord. After waking I also felt as if in a dream or a fog for several months. That was something of a blessing as once it wore off I believe PTSD began, although I was never informed about it and didn't find out until a couple of years ago through my own research. I know what it is to feel alone and alienated. I have been to heaven and hell and no-one I know can begin to understand that. I hope reading others' stories here will show you that you are not the only one. 💕

They used propofol to induce my coma. I had a couple terrible nightmares that someone was being held in a lab having terrible medical procedures done on them. I woke up and it was me. The only way I've been able to move on is through the love of God in Jesus Christ.

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