I had originally written coma-induced and was told it was 'sleep-induced coma'.

Which one is correct?

sleep-induced coma

coma-induced sleep

  • I don't think that either one is valid.
    – Hot Licks
    Mar 7, 2017 at 19:17
  • We should all be terrified if sleep can induce comas. Imagine going to bed and waking up in a coma! (heh.) Mar 7, 2017 at 19:54
  • I think that once or twice, while writing late at night, I have had trouble with sleep induced commas.
    – Hot Licks
    Mar 7, 2017 at 23:05

1 Answer 1


I don't think either of those are common phrases. Usually, "medically-induced coma" is a common induced coma term.

I asked a Board Certified Anesthesiologist. His response:

"Sleep-induced coma" and "coma-induced sleep" are phrases that don't really make much sense. You can't really induce a coma from sleep, and you wouldn't really induce sleep from a coma. It's just called being in a coma. So, no, neither of those are common medical phrases.

Right from the horse's mouth! So if someone's coma is induced from medicine, then it's a "medically-induced coma". Otherwise, they "fell into a coma" or are just plain "in a coma".

  • 1
    Actually I'm pretty sure "coma" and "sleep" are very different things medically speaking. "Sleep" is a normal brain function that has specific things happening in it (deep sleep, REM sleep...). "Coma" is a state of unconsciousness related to brain damage. In that sense "coma-induced sleep" would be wrong because if you are in a coma you are very unlikely to be sleeping. While "sleep-induced coma" could mean you are putting someone to sleep to induce a coma; that's probably where the phrase, which Google confirms exists, originates. But as you say "medically induced coma" is the correct form.
    – Oosaka
    Mar 7, 2017 at 10:13
  • "Sleep induced coma" appears to be the name of a song. Other than that, the Google references appear to be either a sort of slang term for being groggy from sleep deprivation, or a misstatement by non-professionals for what they were likely told was a "drug-induced coma".
    – Hot Licks
    Mar 7, 2017 at 19:23
  • @medica Once I spoke to my doctor friend, I removed the sentence that said they were similar. (Never said they're the same things, though.)
    – ProGrammar
    Mar 7, 2017 at 20:00
  • @ProgrammingEqualsSuperpower - They appear similar superficially, I agree. But as Rozenn stated, they are quite different. Mar 7, 2017 at 20:07

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