- Lethargy - "apparent death"
- Myths and Facts
Lethargy - a pathological condition in which significantly weaken all the external manifestations of life. With lethargy still linked to many superstitions and legends, though modern scholars scrutinize this phenomenon and has put forward several hypotheses.
What happens to a person at the time of lethargy
Before falling into a lethargic sleep can appear its precursors. These include headache, weakness, tiredness, weakness. Sleep attack develops suddenly and can last from a few hours to many years. Officially registered cases, when lethargy lasted twenty years.
Lethargy in most cases similar to the normal deep sleep. The man did not respond to any external stimuli. If you carefully watch him, you can catch the faint movement of eyelids and shallow breathing. The color of the skin does not change, and the pulse is still palpable, although it may be delayed.
In rare cases, more serious condition of the patient lethargic really looks like a "fake death". The skin becomes pale and cold, and imperceptible pulse of only a few beats per minute. Breathing even a little determined using a mirror, held close to the mouth of man. The body temperature is reduced to ambient temperature, and all metabolic processes are slowed dramatically.
Modern medicine can be distinguished from the lethargic sleep of death, even in such difficult situations. There remains dilated pupils reaction to painful stimuli. If the influence of electric shock to the muscles person in a state of lethargy, they will be reduced. Electrocardiography and electroencephalography help register the activity of the heart and brain.
Patients in a state of lethargy
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although not react to what is happening around them, but perceive these events and even remember them. Electroencephalography data helped to confirm this. Having studied the brain activity of patients in a state of lethargy, it was found that registered biotoki exactly the same as in awake humans.
It is widely believed that people lethargic almost do not grow old because slow metabolism
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and can prolong their youth. But this is not so. If a person is in this state for a long time, then due to prolonged immobility formed bedsores occur septic kidney damage, respiratory tract and blood vessels atrophy. So after a very long sleep the patient may even become disabled.
Why is there
According to scientists, there are several reasons due to which a person may come a pathological dream:
- Lethargy as a result of life-threatening conditions. It occurs when a serious head injury, severe poisoning, significant blood loss and physical exhaustion.
- The pathology of the psychic sphere. Catatonic stupor, which is a manifestation of some mental illnesses
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That looks very similar to the true lethargy. In this state, the person is aware of everything that happens around, but can not only move but also to open their eyes. In sensitive people, when they experience significant stress
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(for example, job loss or divorce) may develop hysterical psychogenic or lethargy.
- Some medications can also cause this condition. These tools include interferon - antiviral and anticancer drug that increases the body's immune defenses. Eye drops called "apraclonidine" can cause lethargy in infants.
- Why is there a true lethargy, not yet installed, but has put forward several hypotheses on this subject.
True lethargy rare, only about ten cases worldwide per year. According to one hypothesis it is an unknown virus, and on the other - a strep infection.
Dale Russell and Andrew Church, two contemporary British doctors studied medical records of twenty people who sleep long sleep. Doctors found a pattern: many of these patients, before falling into lethargy, sore throat ached. Further searches revealed a bacterial infection, a rare form of streptococcus in all these patients. On this basis, scientists have determined that the bacteria that cause sore throat, change its properties, overcome immune defenses and cause inflammation of the midbrain. Such nerve damage could provoke an attack of lethargy.
How to help a patient in a state of lethargy
Man in a state of lethargy in need of rest, fresh air and a diet rich in vitamins and other vital substances. In severe condition, when the patient is impossible to feed a conventional manner, it is introduced into the stomach tube through which there ingested food in a liquid or semi-liquid form. If this is not possible, then the parenteral nutrition. Thus the necessary nutrients and salts in the solutions administered intravenously.
When a person is a long time in a fixed position, can develop pressure sores - necrosis (necrosis) of soft tissues. Due to the constant pressure, the local poor circulation, nerve fibers in these areas no longer conduct impulses. Metabolism in the compressed tissues violated and the resulting necrosis is formed, and later can join infection.
It is therefore important to properly care for the skin of the patient in a state of lethargy. One should not lie long in one position, it must constantly turn. Under the place of bone protrusions (scapula, pelvis, knees, elbows, heels, iliac crest) is desirable to lay a soft cushion. In laundry patient should not folds rough seams. For the care of his skin should be used only low-allergenic agents.
Lethargy - an exceptional phenomenon which modern science has not studied thoroughly. Therefore, this condition is associated with a number of questions, the answers to which are only to be found.