Published: Wed, May 09, 2018
Medical | By

Woman's runny nose turns out to be leak of brain fluid

Woman's runny nose turns out to be leak of brain fluid

"We [went] through the nostrils, through the nose", Barnes told KETV, explaining that a team of doctors used Jackson's own tissue as a plug to prevent fluid from spilling out.

A woman in Nebraska who thought she had a runny nose turned out to have a brain leak. They found a small hole between her skull and her nostrils that was leaking approximately 235 milliliters (8 ounces) of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) each day. It was like a waterfall, continuously, she further said. Recent research has shown that in mammals, a surge of CSF flushes through the spaces between brain cells, transporting essential molecules and removing toxic metabolic by-products and cell debris. "Because the skull is a fixed box and the brain is a nice soft organ, it needs to be protected from moving around inside that hard box", Barnes said.

Cerebrospinal fluid is produced continuously in the brain and is normally absorbed into the bloodstream through protrusions in the outer membrane of the brain, called the dura mater. No one ever diagnosed Kendra with a particular allergy, yet she says she has tried 'every over the counter medicine you can take and every medicine you can prescribe'.

According to Barnes, this part of the skull is "very thin, less than a potato chip".

In Jackson's case, the physicians believe that her vehicle accident may have caused a small hole that increased in size over time.

As stated by this Cleveland Clinic, a CSF flow occurs when fluid throughout the brain travels via a hole "through the skull bone", on average as being a outcome of a traumatic accident. But since the accident, she's had to stop working, plagued by headaches that felt like 'somebody hit me with a sledgehammer, ' she says.


Each year, at least five in 100,000 people are affected by a spontaneous CSF leak worldwide, according to research cited by the CSF Leak Association. "Her symptoms actually started a little bit after (the accident), so for her, I think there's probably a combination of both the trauma and the increased pressure".

"Doctor after doctor told Kendra the fluid coming out of her nose was because of allergies".

What is cerebrospinal fluid leak?

"I don't have to carry around the tissue anymore, and I'm getting some sleep", Jackson told the news station, as she continues to recover.

'She probably thought I was insane, because I said "I am not going to leave until you figure out what's wrong with me,"' Kendra recalls. At Nebraska Medicine, she was diagnosed with a CSF leak, which stands for cerebral spinal fluid. "I could tell a great big difference. So get to the doctor".

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