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Anne Heche is not expected to survive brain injury after car crash, family rep says

Actress Anne Heche attends the WIN Awards at Santa Monica Bay Womans Club on December 11, 2013 in Santa Monica, California.
Alberto E. Rodriguez
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Actress Anne Heche attends the WIN Awards at Santa Monica Bay Womans Club on December 11, 2013 in Santa Monica, California.

Actress Anne Heche has been on life support and is not expected to survive after crashing her car into two homes last Friday, a representative for her family and friends told Deadline.

Heche, 53, has been hospitalized since the accident, where she was allegedly speeding in her blue Mini Cooper and crashed into one home and then another, leaving the second in flames.

She is suffering from an anoxic brain injury, the representative told Deadline. How does that affect the body?

Anoxic brain injury

Anoxic brain injuries happen when all oxygen is cut off from the brain. After about four minutes of losing oxygen supply, brain cells begin to die off, according to the Shepherd Center, a private, nonprofit hospital in Atlanta.

Causes of brain injuries

Brain injuries do not necessarily originate in the brain. They can be caused due to any physical trauma that affects the body's ability to take in oxygen, such as a stroke or trauma to the lungs.

Symptoms of brain injuries

Things to look for that could signal a brain injury include both physical limitations and behavioral changes, such as:

  • Headaches
  • Vision issues
  • Aphasia (difficulty speaking)
  • Changes in sleep patterns
  • Seizures
  • Memory problems
  • Depression
  • Trouble focusing
  • Mood swings
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