What causes stupor? 15 possible conditions

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Definition

Stupor is an alteration of consciousness marked by decreased responsiveness to environmental stimuli and absence of spontaneous movement.

Alternative Names

Obtundation, obtunded, stupors, stuporous.

Synopsis

Stupor is a state of impaired consciousness in which it is difficult to arouse a person even with vigorous, noxious stimulation. The state of obtundation resembles a deep sleep from which the person can only be awakened for brief periods by shaking, shouting or pinching. Any alteration of consciousness is considered a medical emergency and immediate medical evaluation and treatment should be provided.

Stupor can be caused by trauma, narcotics, adverse changes within the brain such as a stroke, carbon monoxide poisoning – prompt medical attention is crucial to prevent brain damage and death.

Associated Diagnoses

  • Acetaminophen overdose
  • Diabetic ketoacidosis
  • Epilepsy
  • Alcohol related disorders
  • Head injury
  • Hemorrhagic shock
  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • Concussion
  • Delirium
  • West Nile Virus
  • Narcotic overdose
  • Hypoxia
  • Hyperglycemia
  • Uremia
  • Hyperammonemia
  • Sedative overdose
  • Anti-convulsant overdose
  • Psychotropic drug overdose
  • Thyrotoxicosis
  • Addison’s disease
  • Cushing’s disease
  • Heat stroke
  • Hypothermia
  • Acidosis
  • Alkalosis
  • Meningitis
  • Encephalopathy
  • Encephalitis
  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH)
  • Tumors
  • Cerebral aneurysm
  • Basilar migraine

Diagnosis and Treatment

Stupor is a medical emergency requiring immediate medical investigation to determine the diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

Call 911

If you are unable to arouse a person with a decreased level of consciousness.

Read More

See a list of possible causes in order from the most common to the least.

1

Hyperparathyroidism

In hyperparathyroidism, the parathyroid glands make too much of their hormone. It affects a number of body systems and can cause skin changes, including brittle nails and itching.

Read more »

2

Typhus

Typhus fevers are caused by a bacteria that is transmitted by bites from fleas, ticks, mites, and other arthropods. Rash is a common symptom of typhus.

Read more »

3

Schizophrenia Overview

Although schizophrenia strikes only about one percent of the population, it is so disabling it is considered among the most important of psychiatric illnesses.

Read more »

4

Head Injury

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

A head injury could be an injury to the brain, skull, or scalp. It can vary in severity depending on the cause. In some cases face swelling can be a sign of a head injury.

Read more »

5

Hypovolemic Shock

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Hypovolemic shock is a life-threatening condition that results when you lose more than 20 percent (one-fifth) of your body's blood or fluid supply. This severe fluid loss makes it impossible for the heart to pum...

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6

Epilepsy Overview

Epilepsy is a neurological condition caused by malfunctioning brain cells that result in seizures. There is no cure for this disorder but episodes can become less frequent.

Read more »

7

AIDS

HIV causes progressive failure of the immune system, making the body far more susceptible to infections and cancer.

Read more »

8

Diabetic Ketoacidosis

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a serious complication that stems from diabetes. If you don't have enough insulin to help your body process sugars (glucose), your body will start burning fat to fuel itself. As a result...

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9

Reye's Syndrome

Reye's syndrome is a rare condition that results in sudden swelling and inflammation of the liver and brain and is often accompanied by a red scaly rash. It is not contagious.

Read more »

10

Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis (TB) is a highly infectious disease that primarily affects the lungs. A severe and long-lasting cough, fever, and night sweats could indicate an active TB infection.

Read more »

11

West Nile Virus Infection (West Nile Fever)

A mosquito bite can turn into something much more severe if you are infected with West Nile virus. Mosquitoes transmit this virus after they bite an infected bird and then bite a person. While not all people wit...

Read more »

12

Isopropyl Alcohol Poisoning

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Isopropyl alcohol (IPA) poisoning occurs when the liver is no longer able to manage the amount of IPA in the body. Ingestion may be accidental or deliberate. IPA is inexpensive and causes rapid intoxication. It can b...

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13

Acetone Poisoning

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Acetone poisoning occurs when the amount of acetone in the body is more than what the liver is able to break down. Acetone is a clear liquid that smells like nail polish remover. When exposed to the air, it quickl...

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14

Acetaminophen Overdose

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Acetaminophen is a pain reliever found in over-the-counter and prescription medications. It is the active ingredient in Tylenol. It is also called "paracetamol" and may be labeled APAP on prescription medications.It i...

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15

Aftershave Poisoning

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Aftershave is a lotion, gel, or liquid that is applied to the face after shaving. It is most often used by men. If swallowed, aftershave can produce harmful effects.Aftershave poisoning can be a medical emergency. I...

Read more »

This feature is for informational purposes only and should not be used to diagnose.
Please consult a healthcare professional if you have health concerns.
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