Coma mimicking brain death following baclofen overdose

Intensive Care Med. 2000 Aug;26(8):1144-6. doi: 10.1007/s001340051330.


Baclofen toxicity can be a cause of profound coma with brainstem dysfunction mimicking brain death, and is mainly a clinical diagnosis. Measuring plasma levels is not always possible and may be misleading. Imaging results are usually normal. Electroencephalography may show a pattern of burst suppression. At present no effective specific therapy is available. However, as demonstrated in our case, the prognosis can be good even in severe cases, provided it is recognized early enough, and appropriate supportive measures are instituted.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Baclofen / poisoning*
  • Brain Death / diagnosis*
  • Coma / chemically induced*
  • Coma / diagnosis
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Drug Overdose / diagnosis
  • Drug Overdose / therapy
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle Relaxants, Central / poisoning*


  • Muscle Relaxants, Central
  • Baclofen