What Is Level of Consciousness

Normal level of consciousness is when a person is in a state of alertness, awareness or wakefulness. In such consciousness the person is not asleep or is in a level of sleep from where he can be easily awakened. The abnormal consciousness is difficult to characterize and may include altered state of consciousness like the following:

Stupor: This condition causes to have reduced consciousness and sluggishness. He may have uncoordinated movements that may result in fall or injuries and he may still not be able to respond to the wound 

Delirium: This is a neuropsychiatric syndrome and involves changes in arousal, cognitive deficit and psychotic features like, delusion or hallucination

Locked in syndrome: This condition involves complete paralysis except for the parts controlling the eye movement. It is caused due to traumatic brain injury, medication overdose, disease that destroys myelin sheath around the nerve cells and diseases of circulatory system.

Brain death: In such condition there is no spontaneous breathing and the brain of the patient is completely destroyed. He is kept alive on ventilator giving false hope to his family members.

Lethargy: It is a state of severe drowsiness. The patient can be aroused by moderate stimuli but generally he again drifts back to sleep

Coma: It is a state of deep unconsciousness that may last for an indefinite period of time. This usually occurs due to severe injury, accident or illness 

Altered level of consciousness includes conditions that are  normal, abnormal and paranormal in nature. Diagnosis of level of consciousness includes akinetic mutism, sleeping, pseudo coma, nonconvulsive status epilepticus etc. people may show altered level of consciousness due to reasons like, stroke, trauma and diabetes. In order to maintain normal level of consciousness both the cerebral hemispheres and brainstem have to be intact.


Post a Comment