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Emilia Clarke Is Missing 'Quite A Bit' Of Her Brain After Surviving Two Aneurysms

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Emilia Clarke Is Missing 'Quite A Bit' Of Her Brain After Surviving Two Aneurysms

Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke has revealed she is missing 'quite a bit' of her brain after suffering two aneurysms while filming the hit HBO show.

The 25-year-old experienced her first aneurysm in 2011, the year Game of Thrones was first released, followed by a second in 2013.

An aneurysm is caused by a weakness in the blood vessel wall, usually where it branches, which results in a bulge in the blood vessel, the NHS explains. Most only cause noticeable symptoms if they burst, at which point it is considered a medical emergency.

Clarke starred in Game of Thrones from 2011 to 2019. Credit: HBO
Clarke starred in Game of Thrones from 2011 to 2019. Credit: HBO
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More than a decade after she first suffered an aneurysm, Clarke appeared on BBC One’s Sunday Morning where she stressed how amazing it was that she was still able to live life normally.

She commented: "The amount of my brain that is no longer usable – it’s remarkable that I am able to speak, sometimes articulately, and live my life completely normally with absolutely no repercussions. I am in the really, really, really small minority of people that can survive that.”

The actor went on to discuss the look of her brain scans in the wake of the aneurysms, saying: "There’s quite a bit missing! Which always makes me laugh. Because strokes, basically, as soon as any part of your brain doesn’t get blood for a second, it’s gone. And so the blood finds a different route to get around but then whatever bit it’s missing is therefore gone.”

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As a result of the aneurysms, Clarke at one point suffered from aphasia and for a period of time was even unable to remember her own name. However, thankfully her memory has not been affected long-term.

The actor first opened up about her experiences in an article written for the New Yorker in 2019, when she revealed she had been working with a trainer when she began to feel as if 'an elastic band were squeezing [her] brain'.

"I reached the toilet, sank to my knees, and proceeded to be violently, voluminously ill. Meanwhile, the pain—shooting, stabbing, constricting pain—was getting worse. At some level, I knew what was happening: my brain was damaged," she wrote.

Clarke first experienced an aneurysm while working with a trainer. Credit: Alamy
Clarke first experienced an aneurysm while working with a trainer. Credit: Alamy
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Clarke was later taken to hospital to receive an MRI scan, where she was diagnosed with a subarachnoid hemorrhage; a life-threatening type of stroke.

She continued: "For the patients who do survive, urgent treatment is required to seal off the aneurysm, as there is a very high risk of a second, often fatal bleed. If I was to live and avoid terrible deficits, I would have to have urgent surgery. And, even then, there were no guarantees."

The NHS says that only around 1 in 15,000 people have a ruptured brain aneurysm in England each year.

Featured Image Credit: CBS Sunday Morning/Alamy

Topics: Game Of Thrones, Celebrity, Health

Emily Brown
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