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Ann Indian Acad Neurol. 2019 Oct-Dec;22(4):485-487. doi: 10.4103/aian.AIAN_355_18. Epub 2019 Oct 25.

Patients with Disorders of Consciousness in India: Preliminary Results from a Pilot Survey.

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Neurology, Public Health, Disability Unit - Coma Research Centre, Department of Scientific Directorate, Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Neurologico C. Besta Milan, Italy.
The World Federation for Neurolabirintite - RVP South Asia, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
Department of Neurorehabilitation, Istituti Clinici Scientifici S. Maugeri -IRCCS, Pavia, Italy.
Department of Neurorehabilitation, Istituto S Anna, Crotone, Italy.


The epidemiological data of Indian patients with disorders of consciousness (DOC), specifically vegetative state and minimally conscious state, have not been investigated. The present study sought to explore the current state of the art in India for patients with DOC promoting a pilot survey. An ad hoc questionnaire was sent to a total of 400 Indian professionals who are affiliated to various centers; 59 professionals completed the questionnaire and 52 of them declared that their centers hospitalized patients with DOC in the last year for rehabilitation/medical treatments. The majority of the professionals were from Maharashtra region. The main preliminary findings showed that the prevalence rates of traumatic and nontraumatic etiologies were equally distributed, that the rate of use of the coma recovery scale-revised was low, and that the rehospitalization was always or frequently possible in neurological and rehabilitation units. The extrapolated estimated rate of patients with DOC hospitalized in the centers involved in 2017 was equal to 4 per million of population in Maharashtra region. More than 50% of the professionals declared that there were neither sufficient nor adequate services for caregivers' support. Even if the present pilot survey has some limitations, the present article offers the first preliminary data on patients with DOC in Indian country.


Disorders of consciousness; India; epidemiology; survey; vegetative state

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