Chinese woman wakes from coma after suffering stroke but can only speak English
| February 3rd 2015
Doctors have been left baffled after an elderly Chinese woman awoke from a coma two weeks after suffering a stroke - but can only speak English.
Ninety-four-year-old Liu Jieyu formerly worked as an English teacher, but her family insist she had not spoken the language for more than 30 years.
So it was something of a shock when she awoke from the coma and had apparently lost the ability to speak or understand her mother tongue.
In stark contrast, she was fluent in English.
According to medics in Changsha, China, she came to and, speaking slowly but clearly in perfect English, asked: "Where am I? What is happening?"
An English-speaking doctor found that could no longer speak Chinese.
Liu suffered a cerebral infarction, a kind of stroke where the blood supply is limited rather than instantly cut off by a blockage, a fortnight ago.
It was touch and go whether she would survive.
Dr Tao Hou said: "I can't ever remember having a case like this before but we anticipate with proper rehabilitation and rest she should regain the ability to speak Chinese.
"We assume that the area dealing with her ability to speak Chinese has been damaged, but brain cells to have an ability to repair themselves to a certain extent we would hope to see at least some improvement."
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