Why is Beth Chapman in a medically induced coma?

Beth Chapman, Dog the Bounty Hunter star
Beth Chapman placed in medically induced coma after choking emergency due to throat cancer. Pic credit: @ImageCollect/Admedia

Update:  TMZ is reporting that doctors were forced to put Beth in a medically induced coma after they found it difficult to treat her because she repeatedly pulled out the tubes hospital staff were trying to use to give her fluids and medication. She was agitated, in pain, and in urgent need of oxygen, and she was not reacting well to mild sedation. So doctors had to put in her a medically inducted coma.

Original story: Beth Chapman’s family, and her partner Duane “Dog” Chapman, announced on Saturday that she had been put in a medically induced coma after being admitted to the ICU at the Queen’s Medical Center in Hawaii.

According to TMZ , Beth Chapman was rushed to the hospital early on Saturday after she developed breathing difficulties due to her throat cancer. The family made an emergency call for help after she started choking.

Members of her family, including her daughter Bonnie, were by her side at the hospital yesterday.

Beth’s partner, Duane Chapman, best known for his role in the A&E reality show Dog the Bounty Hunter (2004-20012), also asked everyone to pray for her.

Following the news that doctors have put Beth in an induced coma, many fans have been wondering why they put her in a coma and how they expected that putting her in a coma would help to alleviate her choking and help her body fight back against cancer.

Here is what you need to know.

Why was Beth put in a medically induced coma?

Doctors sometimes purposely induce coma in their patients using barbiturate drugs, such as Pentobarbital or Thiopental.  Carefully controlled doses of barbiturate drugs are used to induce a state of temporary but deep unconsciousness that doctors hope will help to protect the brain from suffering irreversible damage.

Medically induced coma, also referred to as barbiturate-induced coma, is sometimes used to protect the brain from damage as a result of oxygen starvation during major neurosurgical operations. It is also used as a last resort in some medical conditions, which is said to be the case for Beth Chapman.

Although patients in a state of induced coma experience lower respiration rates and usually need artificial ventilation to keep them alive, the resulting reduction in metabolic and oxygen requirement of brain tissues makes the vital organ less susceptible to oxygen starvation.

Beth was first diagnosed with stage II throat cancer in 2017. The cancer tumor was removed through a surgical operation in 2017, but it returned in 2018. And after the tumor started obstructing her airway, causing breathing difficulties, another operation was conducted followed by aggressive chemotherapy.

The operation apparently did not fully resolve her breathing issues and her recent choking emergency exposed her to a grave risk of damage to vital organs of her body, including her brain, as a result of oxygen starvation.

Her doctors might have put her in a medically induced coma to prevent damage to her brain due to lack of oxygen as a result of the obstruction of her airway by the tumor, Doctor Adil Akhtar, an oncologist, told Hollywood Life.

Doctors normally place patients in an induced coma only for a short period of time. They will usually keep patients in an induced coma only for a few days or weeks, and only very occasionally longer.

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