Pune: Seven-time Formula One champion Michael Schumacher was discharged from a French hospital after a miraculous recovery from a medically induced coma he was put into seven months ago following a skiing accident. Neurologists from Pune said that in many cases, they too have induced coma and met with success.
Neurologist Rajas Deshpande said that there is a difference between medically induced coma and comatose condition. “The difference is that in other situation, person goes into coma spontaneously by an external factor that knocks down the brain reflexes. In medically induced coma, doctors put the patient into coma to reduce the brain activity. So far I have used it in two conditions of patients — the more common is patients who get status epilepticus (SE) — a life-threatening condition in which the brain is in a state of persistent seizures while in another case, we use it in brain injury cases. The idea is to put the brain in minimal activity to reduce chances of swelling which could lead to complications,” said Deshpande.
He said that while doctors initially guessed that Schumacher would go into a vegetative state.
But he was pleasantly surprised to know about the racer going home for recuperation.
Another neurologist Dr Anand Alurkar, who practices at KEM and Jehangir Hospital said that coming out of a coma depends largely on patient’s will power too.
He recalled an incident of two young boys meeting with a road traffic accident. “In both cases, the boys had head injuries and after surgery, we had to induce them into coma. Thankfully, both recovered in four months,” said Alurkar.
The doctor stressed that good nursing does the trick.