A 16-year-old boy from Georgia in the USA has awoken from a coma speaking fluent Spanish. 

In September this year Reuben Nsemoh was knocked out during a soccer match after being kicked in the head. 

He took three days to wake up but when he did he was unable to speak his first language, which is English and could only communicate in Spanish. 

"My friends would always talk to me in Spanish and would teach me," he told WSB Radio in Gwinnet County

However while Nsemoh knew some basics of the tongue he'd never mastered it and it's now thought his subconscious remembered words and replayed them while he was in the coma. 

"I wasn't perfect, but my brother is a really fluent Spanish speaker.  So he kind of inspired me with that too," he said.

Later in an interview with WSB TV he described some strange feelings he's been having since the head injury. 

"Sometimes I have days out, sometimes I feel like I'm not there, but I am," he said. 

In the wake of the head injury Nsemoh's soccer coach is calling for goal keepers to wear helmets. 

This is not the first time a person has awoken from a coma speaking a different language - the phenomenon is surprisingly common. 

In Australia 2012 Ben McMahon of Melbourne was a passenger in a car when it was hit by a truck leaving him in a coma for more than a week.

He awoke speaking fluent Mandarin and later enrolled in a class to take advantage of his new found talent. 

McMahon went on to win a Chinese language competition and now hosts a show. 

"They've really welcomed me with open arms," he said to SBS when asked about move to China.

"There aren't too many people that studied the language Mandarin at this level.

"That really gives you a lot of force behind yourself to just keep going and going."

Doctors reportedly call the phenomenon Foreign Language Syndrome and the condition is loosely believed to come about because the part of the brain which controls a sufferers first language is damaged while their second language comes to the fore.


‘War zone’ fatalities: Deadly cost of mental health taboo

Premium Content ‘War zone’ fatalities: Deadly cost of mental health taboo

Mental Health 360: Whitsundays and Mackay identified as suicide hotspots in...

Flashback: When a Beatles member lived in the Whitsundays

Premium Content Flashback: When a Beatles member lived in the Whitsundays

The island’s largest home was later embroiled in a legal scandal that went all the...

Whitsunday man allegedly linked to drug trafficking network

Premium Content Whitsunday man allegedly linked to drug trafficking network

Drugs, guns and luxury cars: Detectives reveal more details about alleged syndicate...