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Healthy man suffers 3 strokes from ‘turning his head too quickly’

'Turning my head quickly was something I've done a million times'

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Yudi Sherman

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Yudi Sherman

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Shining a spotlight on media and government disinformation.

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January 16, 2023

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04:47 AM

Healthy man suffers 3 strokes from ‘turning his head too quickly’

A 35-year-old athlete in peak fitness Wednesday reportedly suffered three strokes after turning his head too fast, according to media reports.  

Joel Hentrich, a father of four from Missouri, said he was playing pickleball with friends when he felt a “pop” in his neck. Immediately, his vision began to blur. Hentrich collapsed, projectile vomited, and began to feel a tingling sensation on the left side of his body according to the Daily Mail. Unable to stand on his own, he was helped to the bench by his friends while medics were called. 

After being rushed to the hospital, Hentrich was told he severed an artery by turning his head too quickly, causing three strokes. But the man said he had done nothing too strenuous. 

Turning my head quickly was something I've done a million times. I went out there that day and was just playing a regular game, nothing strenuous. I was just having fun and just turned my head quickly to the left to try and track a ball. I felt a pop in the back of my neck. I wasn't sure if anyone else could hear it but internally I could. 

While such incidents are precedented, they are extremely rare. Neck manipulation, described as a “high-velocity” twisting or turning of the neck, has been known to rarely cause a severed artery, though a search for similar cases since 2010 yields no other incidents involving more than one stroke. 

The stroke can occur after the torn artery creates a blood clot which restricts blood to the brain. Hentrich developed three blood clots. 

Mainstream media have been reporting several blood clot causes over the last year, including coffee. 

“Blood clots: The nation's favourite drink [tea] could make your blood sticky – increasing risk,” reported the Daily Express last year. The rationale, explained in the article, is that caffeine can lead to dehydration which can then make your blood “sticky” which can then result in a blood clot.  

The headline comes one week after the news outlet reported that bad sleeping positions can also cause blood clots:

Blood clots: How do you sleep? One position may increase the risk of deep vein thrombosis.

While study findings have shown that COVID-19 vaccines cause blood clots, it has not made the media’s list of blood clot causes, even as the CDC and FDA announce a possible connection between the COVID shots and strokes in older adults. 

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