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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 18 years

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If she comes out of the coma will she definitely be brain damaged ?

My 16 year old cousin had a heart attack, now in a coma.will she be okay? My cousin was born with a whole in her heart. She was okay, but she had a heart murmur. She goes to the cardiologist 3 times a year to make sure shes doing fine. 6 months ago when she went her dr. said she was fine. Friday she had just had breakfast at her friends house, they went downstairs in the basement to watch tv. As she sat down in a chair she fell over. No signs of pain prior to her heart attack.Before the ambulance arrived she was without oxygen for 10 minutes. While her friends parents did CPR while on the phone with 911.They gave her a shot in the heart right away. She is now in Philly childrens hospital.Hooked up to what seems to be a million machines. She is in a coma. She doesnt respond to our talking or touching her, but today the dr. put a tube down her nose into her stomach and my aunt said my cousin cryed. When i left there today they were slowing taking her out of the coma. They said sometime between 2 a.m and on she should come out of it. My questions are: If she comes out of the coma will she definitely be brain damaged. I really dont understand the whole brain damaged thing, is it always really bad to the point where she has to be in a hospital for her life, or will she be able to come home and stay in a wheel chair and be fed, and not be able to talk ? What are the chances she wont come out? The eeg specialist said she has abnormal brain activity.
Thu, 17 Dec 2009
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  User's Response
Actually, your cousin suffered not heart attack but brain attack (stroke). The clot formed in the heart might have gone to the brain and caused the stroke. She should have surgically treated for atrial septal defect or ventricular septal defect earlier.
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