Emilia Clarke has opened up about her experience surviving two brain aneurysms and expressed her gratitude for being able to recover after losing “quite a bit” of the organ.
Clarke recalled her health issues during an interview with the BBC on Sunday morning, in which she was promoting her Harold Pinter Theater production of Anton Chekhov’s The Seagull. The play marks the actress’ West End debut.
“It was the most unbearable pain,” Clarke said. “It’s been incredibly helpful that ‘Game of Thrones’ pulls me in and gives me that sense of purpose.”
Clarke suffered two life-threatening brain aneurysms while working on the HBO series: the first in 2011, the second in 2013. Both medical emergencies have required long recovery times. Clarke first spoke about the difficult situation in 2019 and assured that she is completely better now.
“The amount of my brain that isn’t usable anymore – it’s remarkable that I’m able to speak, sometimes articulately, and live my life normally without any effects,” Clarke said. “I’m in the really, really, really small minority of people who can survive this.”
Clarke then recalled the time she saw scans of her brain after the incidents.
“It’s missing quite a bit,” Clarke said before breaking into a big chuckle. “What always makes me laugh…strokes basically, as soon as any part of your brain doesn’t get blood for a second, it’s gone. So the blood finds another way to get around, but then the missing is gone.”
Clarke has since started a charity for victims of brain injuries and stroke called SameYou, despite moving beyond her own medical struggles and embracing her current health condition.
“I thought, ‘Well, that’s you. That’s the brain you have.’ So there’s no point in constantly worrying about what might not be there,” Clarke said.
Clarke also took the time to talk about her role in The Seagull, which premieres July 6th.
“Having the opportunity to play Nina in ‘The Seagull’ on the West End stage with a lauded, acclaimed, incredible director like Jamie Lloyd – it was kind of a profound experience… It’s daring to admit a play as popular and well-known as this take and put it in such a modern, stripped down, bare [format]’ shared Clarke. “That’s why you do theatre. It’s so exciting.”
https://variety.com/2022/tv/news/emilia-clarke-brain-surgery-aneurysm-1235318521/ Emilia Clarke: Parts of my brain are ‘missing’ after stroke