What the Yuck: Paralyzing hickeys
February 5th, 2012
09:15 AM ET

What the Yuck: Paralyzing hickeys

Too embarrassed to ask your doctor about sex, body quirks, or the latest celeb health fad? In a regular feature and a new book, "What the Yuck?!," Health magazine medical editor Dr. Roshini Raj tackles your most personal and provocative questions. Send 'em to Dr. Raj at whattheyuck@health.com.

Q: I read about a woman who got a hickey that led to a stroke that partially paralyzed her! How is that possible?

A: Crazy, right? But it can happen.

A hickey is really nothing more than a bruise that occurs when the force of someone sucking on your neck is strong enough to rupture superficial blood vessels.

In the case that was in the news, it seems that the hickey was located near a major artery, and the suction was tremendous enough to create a blood clot which led to the stroke.

Honestly, though, your chances of getting a life-threatening hickey are extremely small (unless, perhaps, you’re dating a vampire).

Copyright Health Magazine 2011

soundoff (32 Responses)
  1. Portland tony

    A hickey is a man's brand..Suggest he suck on something less obvious.

    February 6, 2012 at 10:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Americal69

    naw it's a girls brand. they can't just pee on ya you know.

    February 8, 2012 at 13:27 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mr. Turdstool

      Do you need me to clean the turds from your lawn...because I shtting all over you!

      So funny B^)

      February 13, 2012 at 15:52 | Report abuse |
    • Prasad

      Wow. Great story, William: clear, precise witring, with measured insight and a powerful sense of place.I tripped on the names a couple of times toward the middle. There's no easy way around that, I know. In similar situations in the past, I've tried using labels (especially visual ones) to stand in for (and alongside) the names. That sometimes makes it easier on the reader.

      April 9, 2012 at 04:27 | Report abuse |
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  3. Mr. Turdstool

    Now, that's a SUCKY WAY TO DIE!

    I am soooooooooooooooooooo funny! I know you are chucking. Your little squeels of joy excite me!

    February 13, 2012 at 15:51 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.