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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 8(1); 1997 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 1997;8(1): 113-119.
A CASE OF SURVIVOR WHO SHOWED ALPHA COMA APTER AN ATTEMPTED SUICIDE BY HANGING
Sung Tae Ahn, Yong Joo Lee, Kwang Je Baek, Jun Sik Kim, Il Keun Lee, Choong Kun Ha
1Department of Emergency Medicine, Inha University Medical College, Korea.
2Department of Neurology, Inha University Medical College, Korea.
ABSTRACT
A case of survivor who showed alpha coma after an attempted suicide by hanging was reported. A 44 years old women was admitted to the hospital because of respiratory arrest following a hanging attempt on July 3, 1996. She was found pendant completely. On admission she was comatose and the pupils were not reactive to light. The systolic pressure was 100 mmHg, and diastolic pressure was 80mmHg and she had no self respiration and immediately an endotracheal intubation was instituted. After three hours from the onset, the weak spontaneous respiration was restored and the pupils reacted briskly to light. On the 1st day the brain computed tomography (CT) revealed no abnormal findings. An electroencephalogram (EEG) showed widespread alpha activity without occipital dominance a moderate amount of regular, 8 approximately 10 Hz, 10 approximately 30 microvolt potentials. This alpha rhythm had persisted until 24 hours from the onset. At 36 hours later she was still comatose, presenting flaccid quadriplegia with no responses to stimulations. On the 2nd hospital day she was drowsy and on the 3rd day she had become conscious. She showed gradual progress towards complete nerologic recovery. This is the first presentation of a survivor from alpha coma caused by anoxic encephalopathy following a hanging attempt in Korea.
Key words: Alpha coma, Hanging, Suicide, Anoxia
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