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A 42-year-old member asked:

Can a person in a coma hear you?

1 doctor answer4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Devon Webster
Medical Oncology 22 years experience
Likely yes!: I can answer this from personal experience. I spent months in an ICU on a ventilator and i was in a coma for part of that time. I heard a lot more than anyone imagined! believe me, i could write a soap opera. Always assume that someone in a coma can hear you. Talk to the person as if they can, and put your mouth close to their ear. Don't let anyone make you feel silly for doing so!

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A 41-year-old member asked:

Can a person in a coma hear things at all?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. William Singer
Pediatric Neurology 51 years experience
No: Coma is usually defined as unconscious unresponsiveness. During coma an individual cannot hear. However during an acute or chronic vegetative state or minimally responsive state, during which patients may appear to be in coma, a patient may have memory of what is said.
Lebanon
A 21-year-old female asked:

Can a person in a coma hear everything ?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. William Goldie
Pediatric Neurology 48 years experience
It depends: There are many forms of coma. With light coma the patient can be aware and remember everything that occurs around him. In deeper forms they may be aware but do not remember. In very deep forms there is no awareness or memory. It is very difficult for even highly trained observers to judge the level of coma. No specfic test is definitive. Assume they are aware until proven otherwise.
Dr. William Goldie
Pediatric Neurology 48 years experience
Provided original answer
You may want to read Brain on Fire by Susannah Cahalan, and Proof of Heaven by Dr Eben Alexander.
Jan 4, 2013
A 39-year-old member asked:

Can a person hear sounds around them if they are in a coma?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. William Singer
Pediatric Neurology 51 years experience
No: Coma is usually defined as unconscious unresponsiveness. During coma an individual cannot hear. However during an acute or chronic vegetative state or minimally responsive state, during which patients may appear to be in coma, a patient may have memory of what is said.

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Last updated Apr 9, 2015

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