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Can you be brain dead after you heart stopping for 10 minutes?

My friend's sister in law was delivering a 9lbs baby and was pushing at 8cm. At that point she wasnt dialating anymore and they decided to do a Csection. As they gave her the anestesia, her heart stopped for 10 minutes. They induced a coma and will be waking her up tomorrow to see if she has any brain damage.

My question is: Is this possible, to be brain dead? And how common is it? Can someone wake up and be fine? Does anyone have any info about it?

I appreciate it because we are very worried about her. Thanks.


Asked by Allie120 at 10:27 PM on Feb. 15, 2010 in Health

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Answers (4)
  • I am HONESTLY not saying this to make you worried, just because this happened to me DOES NOT mean it will happen to your sister in law, I am just telling you an experience.

    Last year my mothers heart stopped for around 10 minutes, she however went into a coma on her own, no one put her in one. She did end up being brain dead and died a month later.

    I REALLY hated answering this question, but I know I would want someone to answer me. So I did.
    Talk to her doctors, they can probably give you a MUCH better idea about if she'll wake up or not than anyone on here.

    Answer by wahm_abbeyrose at 10:58 PM on Feb. 15, 2010

  • It really depends. My grandfather had a heartattack and had no heartbeat for 27 minutes. However they were able to revive him but he was completely braindead and was on life support until we decided to take him off. He died a week later. I think I have heard of people being dead for a number of minutes, being revived and were completely fine. How many minutes? I'm not sure. With no blood, oxygen, etc. pumping through the body and to the brain, it is a very good possibility her organs, including her brain, have shut down. Doesn't mean there isn't hope that she will be fine, but I think you all need to be prepared for the worst...just in case. I am very sorry but I wish you all the best of luck and I pray your SIL will be just fine. What a tragic story.

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:05 PM on Feb. 15, 2010

  • Since she was in a hospital I am pretty sure they wouldn't have sat there and let her just have no heartbeat for 10 minutes. Now, it's possible her heart wouldn't beat on it's OWN for that long but they would have started CPR of some sort which would have kept her blood circulating to her brain and pumping her heart artificially would have kept her systems working.

    I'm saying a prayer for your friend's SIL. I hope she fully recovers and gets to enjoy that new little bundle. I hope you can let us know the outcome somehow.....GL

    Answer by Allergic2Stupid at 11:25 PM on Feb. 15, 2010

  • From what medical knowledge I know, as long as they were giving her oxygen and CPR, she has a good possiblility of being ok. Brain damage stems from a lack of oxygen, so if they hopped right on her and started with the CPR, her brain should have received an adequate amount of oxygen.

    I'll be saying a prayer for her!

    Answer by things_not_sane at 1:07 AM on Feb. 16, 2010

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