Vanja, a 43-year-old man, was rushed to the hospital after suffering from a health issue. Just hours after being admitted, medical staff found him unconscious on the toilet floor. It was later discovered that he had choked on a fig and his brain had run out of oxygen, resulting in a coma. The sudden collapse of the Gudac family’s idyllic life was announced on Nova TV’s supplement.
The first 15 days of Vanja’s coma were terrifying for his loved ones. Doctors initially told them he wouldn’t survive, but later they asked when they could take him home. Vera Gudac, Vanja’s mother, described him as “like a piece of furniture.”
Vanja responds best to music, videos and audio messages. The biggest reward for his caregivers is a wink and a handshake. Although institutions have given up on Vanja, his cousin Vlado Naglić believes that every video and picture he receives is “soul food” for him and gives him hope for a better tomorrow.
Tatjana Popović Naglić asked everyone who heard Vanja’s story to send them a message, whether it be reading a story or just saying hello. She said that Vanja responds well to these messages and it is all they can give him now.
Dnevnik Nova TV reporter Domagoj Mikić spoke with Marina Raguž, a neurosurgeon at the Dubrava Clinical Hospital, who confirmed that messages can stimulate the brain. Raguž explained that patients should always be encouraged to talk to each other, play music and stimulate their senses in any way possible because there is no way to rule out that this can stimulate the brain further. She also noted that there are several bizarre cases where deep brain stimulation has been considered as an option such as children who choked on pills or suffocated by blowing balloons. To become eligible for deep brain stimulation therapy, patients must meet neurophysiological, neuroradiological and clinical criteria such as having a signal between the brain and periphery and being in good condition for treatment radiology tests must be done too.