My brothers in a coma/vegetative state from an OD... - ICUsteps

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My brothers in a coma/vegetative state from an OD and I’m losing my mind.


On June 17th, my brother was found unresponsive in a hotel room, having overdosed after being sober for 10 months. His drug of choice was alcohol but he ended up relapsing..this time turning to hard drugs trying to avoid alcohol and us knowing, and he laid for hours in that room alone with not enough oxygen. He suffered anoxic brain damage. He had a heart attack, stroke and kidney failure. He’s recovered from the kidney failure, not on dialysis anymore but he has not regained consciousness. His eyes open but no meaningful response although he does look at me. He will not squeeze my hand or respond to any other commands. I play music, talk to him, and sometimes..more times lately, I cry and beg him to wake up and still he lies in ICU unresponsive. He had a tracheotomy done. He’s not on any life support except the feeding tube in his stomach. I can’t believe God would let him survive everything he’s endured to end up in a vegetative for the rest of his life. I’m wondering if we did the right thing insisting the keep him alive early on, we thought he just needed time. I’m still praying for a miracle but I’m losing faith, and losing my mind. I’m in a dark dark place mentally. My brother and I were/are very close. Seeing him like this is killing me. It really feels like my life force is draining away. I think I’m ready to have a total breakdown. I can’t believe this has happened. My brother, who I love so much, who I have helped into detox/rehab with alcohol problem only for this to happen a year later. I torment myself..why didn’t I see it? Looking back there were signs something was “off” but I was too consumed..with horrible crap going on in my life to see it. And why he didn’t come to me like he did every other time in his life..why he decided to hide it now. I’d rather be dead myself then have to be tortured with this. I have three young kids and I’m trying to hold it together for them but I’m slipping..I’m losing it. I love my brother so much and this is killing me. I can’t handle it. My brother and I have both walked hard roads in life and it seems cruel for fate to be this way. And I don’t think I’ll survive this myself. After ICU he’ll go to some institution and be cared for by them. This hell will drag on forever. And I’m thinking if this is how he is to’s no life! It’s too much! Please help me.

Anyone else have a loved one in a coma or vegetative state that it ended well? I need hope in this blackness.

8 Replies

Don't give up. Keep praying and having faith in God, you will receive a miracle, you just have to keep believing. My mums been in the induced coma for about 2 months now but we are staying strong in our faith and believing that all will be well. Keep praying, keep standing strong it will get better, remember your kids need you. Will keep you in my prayers

in reply to Homl

Thank you, I will keep faith , going tonight to see him again and bringing some lavender water to wash him and an MP3 player for nurses to play music for him when I’m not there. I also pray for your mother to fully recover soon.

Hello I’m so sorry for your situation my brother was attacked 1 year ago and suffered a traumatic head injury part of his skull was removed to allow the brain to swell he spent 8 days in a coma woke up on day 9 spent 3 month in hospital then 3 month in a rehab centre where they said he wasn’t following the smart accessment that is used to determine a persons state, he’s now been put in a care home he’s classed as minimally conscious which is one stage up from vegatatavie state , I will say talk to him talk about old times let him feel your touch every time I walked back into the itu I would check his heart rate on monitor was always 50/60 soon as I said hello brother it used to shoot up to over 90 , he could hear me . I’m one year down the line and its still so raw I miss my brother so much he doesn’t talk , peg fed and needs 24 hour care , it’s a long road ahead I’m not going to lie but u find the strength to carry on don’t know how but you do , I hope you see some improvement soon

in reply to Leab2017

Wow we are in very similar situations. I long to hear my brothers voice, see his smile. I know he would be horrified to see himself as he is. Minimally conscious state is an improvement from vegetative state and I hope and pray your brother-and mine-both improve to higher states of consciousness. It’s so hard..not sure how you endure it but I guess we find a way. I’m trying to keep faith, some days are worse then others, but I’ll try to keep putting one foot ahead of the other. For my brother and for my children. God bless you and thank you for your reply. I feel so alone and your reply makes me feel not so alone...just to know someone else knows what I’m going through.

in reply to Moonshyne

I have felt the same for a year as no one understands apart from family members I was ignorant to brain injury minimally conscious etc but I’ve researched so so much over the past year it’s helped to understand a little more , my brother spoke 6 month ago he was shouting Mam Mam then he grabbed my hand almost crying saying aww aww (it was my brothers voice some reason I thought it would of changed) he hasn’t done it since he also wrote his name once but not again we are in the process of moving him to a rehab centre he’s declined drastically at the home he’s in now the rehab is so so important the damaged part of the brain never repairs it jst needs to retrain , I’m not sure where in the world you are but if you need any advice on care homes after the hospital side of things don’t hesitate in contacting me I hope your ok and I hope there has been improvements in your brother

It's early for your brother. Please read my story about my husband. Its a true story of hope, faith and prayer. Everything you said, i felt along the wat. Your brother may just suprise you at some point. His body may need more time. I wish i could guarantee his recovery for you but i hope my story at least gives you comfort that you are nit alone and his recovery could happen too. Have the doctors given any concrete tests showing brain damage? I hope i have helped you some because reading miracle stories got me through many nights. You could reach out to your family doctor for yourself to help with your anxiety/depression too. I will pray for your brother as im close to my younger and have lost an older one.


For all the replies, your loved one most definately hears you, senses you and probably feels your touch. My husbands first definate response was a kiss. Not a squeeze for the dr or a toe wiggle etc. His response was to me and his sister too, not the dr or nurse. I feel for you all, it is gut wrenching. Im about to reintroduce my husband into our home and its still hard as i know things are different. Keep looking forward.

Hi, there im going through the same thing my brother suffered brain damage after being deprive of oxygen to long. So he was on breathing machines etc... until he left the hospital and was put in a recovery/nursing home. They say he is in a vegetative state. Its torture for me as well as my family. My brother went from loving to cook, hanging on the porch talking to anyone passing by etc.. to being on a feeding tube and no signs of communication. God help him please, this is the hardest thing I have ever experience. Thanks for sharing because you feel like know one else knows...

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