In a sudden turn of events, Vanja Gudac (43) found himself in a coma after choking on a fig that got stuck in his throat. The fig caused his brain to run out of oxygen, leaving him unconscious for 15 days before he woke up.
The first few weeks of Vanja’s coma were difficult for his family, with doctors telling them he would not survive. However, after the 15th day, they were informed that he was responding well and would soon be able to go home.
Vanja reacts best to music, videos, and audio messages. His mother Vera Gudac finds it hard to believe that her son is still alive and has taken it upon herself to care for him every day. She says that she finds it challenging to accept the new reality of her life without Vanja.
Tatjana Popović Naglić, Vanja’s cousin, has been by his side throughout the entire ordeal. She believes that messages can stimulate the brain and has been encouraging everyone who heard Vanja’s story to send him a message. According to Popović Naglić, Vanja responds very well to messages and greetings from those who care about him most deeply.
Dnevnik Nova TV reporter Domagoj Mikić spoke with Marina Raguž, a neurosurgeon at the Dubrava Clinical Hospital, who confirmed that messages can indeed stimulate the brain. Raguž explained that families are always encouraged to talk to patients, play music, and stimulate them in any way possible because there is evidence that this can help improve their condition.
However, there are some bizarre cases where deep brain stimulation has been successful even when other methods have failed. For example, there was a child who choked on a pill and woke up after an experimental study involving deep brain stimulation was conducted on him. Another patient woke up after being in a deep coma for over a year due to an accident but improved significantly after being treated with this method.
According to Raguž, someone must meet specific criteria before being considered as a candidate for this treatment method. These criteria include neurophysiological testing of whether there is communication between the brain and periphery; neuroradiological testing of what is happening within the brain; clinical evaluation of the patient’s overall condition; and various radiological tests such as MRI scans or PET scans.
Overall, these findings suggest that deep brain stimulation may hold promise as an effective treatment option for individuals like Vanja who fall outside traditional categories of palliative care patients with postoperative conditions or those diagnosed with cancer.