I'll have few questions about passing out and dreaming. English is not my native language, and my biology knowledge is very limited. So bear with me.

  • What exactly is blackout? (in a really simple way)
  • Are there different types of blackout? (see below)
  • Do fainting, passing out, and blacking out mean the same thing?
  • Can someone have a dream/vision after loosing consciousness? (during blackout?)

I'm asking these because I had a similar experience and I'm trying to make sense of it.

We were goofing around and a friend of mine had me in an arm triangle. I suspect he choked me, because I lost consciousness for a few seconds, max 3. While in that state, I kind of had a dream or vision, whatever it is called. It felt like hours. This was a long time ago and I still remember the dream, but can't make sense of it. What I've seen was really interesting and I couldn't just let it go.

I'm not asking for dream analysis or anything, but the biological/neurological aspect of what happened, so don't get me wrong.

I'm also new in here, though not to stackexchange, so the tags might need a modification.


closed as unclear what you're asking by David, AliceD Jul 8 '18 at 20:58

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Fainting, passing out, and blacking out are all common terms for the same thing, a sudden loss of consciousness of short duration. The medical term for this is syncope. It is caused by a decrease in blood flow to the brain, limiting the the availability of oxygen and nutrients to the brain cells. Brain cells have high energy requirements, so this causes them to stop functioning, causing loss of consciousness and muscle tone.

There are many causes of syncope. In the situation mentioned, a likely possibility is a pressure change in the carotid sinus which is located at the side of the neck. When sensed by a nerve, this can cause primitive parts of the nervous system to change the dilation of blood vessels and the beating of the heart in a manner that brings on syncope.

Dreaming during syncope is not uncommon and that fact may be useful in distinguishing syncope from epileptic seizures according to research by Chiesa et al..


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