August 17, 2018

Woman's Runny Nose Was Actually Leaking Brain Fluid, Doctors Say

09 May 2018, 05:41 | Rodolfo Wallace

Woman's Runny Nose Was Actually Leaking Brain Fluid

After experiencing a runny nose for 5 years Kendra Jackson was finally diagnosed with a cerebrospinal fluid leak this year

Some sleepless nights, she even contemplated suicide. She thought it was just a cold symptom.

On the brink of madness, Kendra knew her incessantly running nose had to be something more. In short, Jackson's brain fluid was leaking through her nose at a rate of approximately a half-pint per day.

According to the Cleveland Clinic, a CSF leak occurs when fluid around the brain travels through a hole "through the skull bone", typically as a result of a traumatic injury. Later, she started to have constant runny nose, painful headaches and sleep issues as well.

She lost her ability to smell and instead lived with a constant taste of salt lingering at the back of her throat.

The medical team at Nebraska Medicine found a small hole between Jackson's skull and her nostrils that was the source of the leak.

Cerebrospinal fluid circulates through the brain's ventricles and around the spinal cord.

For Kendra, it wasn't so much pain as the incessant dropping of her nose that was interfering with her life. During her recovery, she noticed her nose runnier than usual, reported KETV.

Her nose started running nearly immediately following the accident, but two-and-a-half years ago, the pace really picked up.

"I can tell a great big difference, oh man a great big difference", said Jackson.

She had been working as a driver for an EMT company.

"She was rear-ended and had head trauma, so it's certainly possible", Barnes said.

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'My body was changing, my lifestyle was changing.

"I couldn't sleep, I was like a zombie", Jackson said.

In 2015, Jackson's "runny nose" began to worsen.

"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.

The dripping and the migraines would wake her up every couple of hours.

"I don't have to carry around the tissues anymore, and I'm getting some sleep", Jackson said after her recent surgery.

The doctors she saw told her that she probably had allergies. One week after the operation, Jackson said she felt incredible. If it drains into the throat, it has been described as salty tasting.

At the end of her rope, Kendra wound up in Dr Christine Barnes' office. "I knew something was wrong".

This was also Jackson's case as she underwent surgery a few weeks ago. However, due to the risk of meningitis, more severe cases of the condition can be treated with endonasal endoscopic surgery-where medics operate on a patient using a camera and tools sent through the nose.

It isn't known for certain what caused the leak, however, the woman reported being in a vehicle crash a few years before the leak first started.

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