Coma, Vegetative State, and Brain Death: What are the Differences?

Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) can change your life in an instant, whether you are the victim or a loved one of the victim. Any type of accident can lead to serious brain injuries, including those that force a victim into a coma, vegetative state, or to become brain dead.

Today, we wanted to look at the differences between these three states, as they are often confused for one another.

What is a coma?

When a patient is in a coma, he or she is in a state of consciousness that is depressed, which means the patient does not react to stimuli (such as voices or physical touch). A coma is different from brain death because the brain stems will signal responses and the patient will even exhibit breathing and motor responses that do not seem to have any purpose to them.

What is a vegetative state?

A vegetative state occurs when a patient is still considered alive, but that person has very limited consciousness. Even if the eyes are open, the patient will not follow the instructions of the doctor or follow their actions or movements. A patient in a vegetative state does not speak, but will react to stimuli.

What is brain death?

Brain death occurs when the activities in the brain and the brain stem ceases to function. Despite the cessation of activities, the reflexes that travel through the spinal cord might still show when a patient has been declared to be brain dead. These patients will likely need feeding tubes and respirators in order to survive.

How do these injuries occur?

These injuries are most often caused by severe trauma to the head. The most common causes of these traumatic brain injuries include the following:

  • Assault
  • Gun shots
  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Bicycle accidents
  • Motorcycle accidents
  • Construction accidents
  • Infections
  • Blunt force trauma to the head

If your loved one suffered a TBI, and is now unable to advocate for him or herself, you can protect their rights by calling an experienced Charlotte brain injury attorney. Call the office of Warren & Kallianos, PLLC at 704-275-5593 or complete a contact form found on our website to schedule your free consultation.

 

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"We were referred to Jeff Warren from another attorney and had a great experience with my son’s medical injury case/settlement, I have always been hesitant about personal injury lawsuit’s and attorneys but Jeff and his practice made the whole process easy and stress free from the beginning to the end. I would definitely recommend them to any and every one!!! We are very grateful to Jeff and his staff for all their patience and knowledge."

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Warren & Kallianos
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"We were referred to Jeff Warren from another attorney and had a great experience with my son’s medical injury case/settlement, I have always been hesitant about personal injury lawsuit’s and attorneys but Jeff and his practice made the whole process easy and stress free from the beginning to the end. I would definitely recommend them to any and every one!!! We are very grateful to Jeff and his staff for all their patience and knowledge."

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"Having worked with both Chris and Jeff, as well as their office staff, I can say with confidence that they are the most sincere, committed personal injury attorneys I have ever met. They are passionate about making sure their clients get a fair settlement, and are sympathetic to the disruption and even trauma that the whole process can create. It helps that they are a small team, and everyone knows the clients and their situations."

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Warren & Kallianos
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"Having worked with both Chris and Jeff, as well as their office staff, I can say with confidence that they are the most sincere, committed personal injury attorneys I have ever met. They are passionate about making sure their clients get a fair settlement, and are sympathetic to the disruption and even trauma that the whole process can create. It helps that they are a small team, and everyone knows the clients and their situations."

I would highly recommend Mr. Kallianos and his staff

"Chris Kallianos has been such a blessing to our family during this trying time! He has done an excellent job in making sure we are informed of what is going on with our case. I would highly recommend Mr. Kallianos and his staff if you have a personal injury you are dealing with. We truly appreciate all of your hard work! Best lawyer around!"

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Warren & Kallianos
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"Chris Kallianos has been such a blessing to our family during this trying time! He has done an excellent job in making sure we are informed of what is going on with our case. I would highly recommend Mr. Kallianos and his staff if you have a personal injury you are dealing with. We truly appreciate all of your hard work! Best lawyer around!"

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Warren & Kallianos
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"Chris Kallianos was my lawyer for over a year after a bad car accident. He’s honest and dedicated to his clients, and I would recommend him to anyone that needs a lawyer in the future."

I recommend them to everyone.

"Great people to help me with my case, Great Lawyer and Paralegals. they always answered the phone, always had a response for my question. I recommend them to everyone. they also have someone that speaks Spanish (for my parents) I am thankful for everything and time that they give me. thank you so much, God bless."

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Warren & Kallianos
5.0
2018-10-07T23:27:01+00:00

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"Great people to help me with my case, Great Lawyer and Paralegals. they always answered the phone, always had a response for my question. I recommend them to everyone. they also have someone that speaks Spanish (for my parents) I am thankful for everything and time that they give me. thank you so much, God bless."

Not sure how we would have managed without this Law Firm

"Not sure how we would have managed without this Law Firm. They have been extremely compassionate about my husbands injury causing disability – which has been a life changing event for our family. They are always available to talk with us no matter when we call. They have kept us up to date regarding the case, which has kept us from worrying. I would recommend this Law Firm to anyone who needs legal help."

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Warren & Kallianos
5.0
2018-10-07T23:29:03+00:00

Client

"Not sure how we would have managed without this Law Firm. They have been extremely compassionate about my husbands injury causing disability – which has been a life changing event for our family. They are always available to talk with us no matter when we call. They have kept us up to date regarding the case, which has kept us from worrying. I would recommend this Law Firm to anyone who needs legal help."
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