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Below is the Mind Flayer's Mind Blast feature:

Each creature in that area must succeed on a DC 15 Intelligence saving throw or take 22 (4d8 + 4) psychic damage and be stunned for 1 minute. A creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success. (Monster Manual, pg 222)

Suppose a character was knocked unconscious by an illithid's mind blast, and then got healed less than a minute later. What is the correct way of handling whether or not they're stunned?

  1. The stunned condition ends when they're knocked unconscious, and reviving them means they're not stunned.

  2. The stunned condition continues, in addition to rolling death saves they should be rolling Int saves to shake off the stun.

  3. The stunned condition continues, but an unconscious character can't make an Int save, so they should roll an Int save upon being revived to see if they shake it off.

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The Stunned condition lasts until a minute passes (or if you succeed on the saving throw); in general, conditions tell you when/how they end

The section on "Conditions" states:

[...] A condition lasts either until it is countered (the prone condition is countered by standing up, for example) or for a duration specified by the effect that imposed the condition.

In this particular case the Mind Flayer's statblock states:

Mind Blast [...] Each creature in that area must succeed on a DC 15 Intelligence saving throw or take 22 (4d8 + 4) psychic damage and be stunned for 1 minute. A creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success.

Unless something explicitly says otherwise, the stunned condition that Mind Blast causes will not end until the 1 minute is up. As user @Ryan Thompson points out, there is further evidence that conditions persist even through the more extreme case of death. The PHB errata states:

Exhaustion (p. 291). The following sentence is appended to the last paragraph: “Also, being raised from the dead reduces a creature’s exhaustion level by 1.”

There would be no reason to reduce a creature's exhaustion level upon resurrection unless death did not reduce it to 0 already. Thus exhaustion levels persist even through death, let alone just unconsciousness, this would similarly apply to other conditions as well.


It is noteworthy that while unconscious you would continue to make saving throws to end the stun from Mind Blast. This could end the effect before the 1 minute is up, and is possible because ending the Stunned condition requires an Intelligence saving throw -- both the Unconscious and Stunned conditions do not make you automatically fail these.

If you wish to remove the stunned condition I refer you to the question "How can I end the Stunned Condition?"

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Pretty sure you are right but to me it just seems logical that the intended rules would be the condition ends on falling unconscious. \$\endgroup\$ – Eternallord66 Oct 29 '19 at 21:44
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'm not saying you are wrong. You are probably right. What I meant is that effects that deal with your brain/mind, to me, makes sense for it to end upon unconsciousness. \$\endgroup\$ – Eternallord66 Oct 29 '19 at 21:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Eternallord66 Ah understood, comment removed then \$\endgroup\$ – Medix2 Oct 29 '19 at 21:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Eternallord66 it does make sense, at least when the condition is the result of something non-magical. But when its magical, things definitely get muddier. \$\endgroup\$ – Journer Oct 29 '19 at 22:34
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Journer That is true. That's why I said Medix2 was probably right. \$\endgroup\$ – Eternallord66 Oct 29 '19 at 22:37
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I think 3 applies, but possibly 2. So you need to ask your DM.

Appendix A of the Player's Handbook says this about conditions

A condition lasts either until it is countered (the prone condition is countered by standing up, for example) or for a duration specified by the effect that imposed the condition.
If multiple effects impose the same condition on a creature, each instance of the condition has its own duration, but the condition's effects don't get worse.

PHB chapter 9 (Combat), section - Damage and Healing, subsection - Death Saving Throws says

Whenever you start your turn with 0 hit points, you must make a special saving throw, called a death saving throw, to determine whether you creep closer to death or hang onto life. Unlike other saving throws, this one isn't tied to any ability score. You are in the hands of fate now, aided only by spells and features that improve your chances of succeeding on a saving throw.

Which may indicate that your focus is entirely upon avoiding death, nothing else.

However, it isn't explicitly stated that being Unconscious due to being at 0 hit points prevents making other saving throws, so the afflicted character may be able to do both a death saving throw, and an Intelligence saving throw, at the same time.

Either way, the Stunned condition only works for up to 10 turns for that character, depending on their results from the Intelligence saves.

You should also know that neither Restoration spell will have any effect upon the conditions, given what they list they can do:

Lesser Restoration

You touch a creature and can end either one disease or one condition afflicting it. The condition can be blinded, deafened, paralyzed, or poisoned.

Greater Restoration

You imbue a creature you touch with positive energy to undo a debilitating effect. You can reduce the target's exhaustion level by one, or end one of the following effects on the target:

One effect that charmed or petrified the target
One curse, including the target's attunement to a cursed magic item
Any reduction to one of the target's ability scores
One effect reducing the target's hit point maximum

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