White Sox pitcher Danny Farquhar ‘progressing well’ following surgery for brain aneurysm
The Chicago White Sox were taking on the Houston Astros at Guaranteed Rate Field on April 20 when White Sox pitcher Danny Farquhar walked off the mound vomiting. Eventually, he collapsed and was rushed to a nearby hospital where it was discovered he suffered from a brain aneurysm.
According to multiple reports, Farquhar underwent multiple surgeries to reduce swelling around his brain. While he is currently stabilized and ‘progressing well,’ according to a team statement, it’s been suggested that his critical condition will most likely put an end to his baseball career that’s spanned nearly eight years. He has been with the White Sox since July 24, 2017.
At just 31-years-old, a brain aneurysm came as a surprise to many. In this USA Today article, Sohail Shahpar, Farquhar’s longtime agent and close friend said, “You just can’t imagine this happening, not to a baseball player in the middle of the game. As a baseball player, you have Tommy John surgery, guys blowing out their arms or knees. Guys taking line drives off their body or even head. But this?”
However, it turns out brain aneurysms may not be as uncommon as you may think. According to the Brain Aneurysm Foundation, a brain aneurysm ruptures every 18 minutes in the United States. Additionally, there are almost 500,000 deaths worldwide each year caused by brain aneurysms with half the victims being younger than 50.
“Brain aneurysms can happen to anyone,” says Dr. Hamad Farhat, a neurosurgeon at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, Ill. “However, women, African-Americans, Hispanics, and those aged 35 to 60 are typically at a higher risk. Most aneurysms commonly develop after the age of 40, closer to 50.”
Dr. Farhat says early diagnosis is critical in preventing neurological damage or death. Knowing the below warning signs can help save a life:
- Severe and localized headache
- Eye pain, blurred or double vision, dilated pupils
- Difficulty speaking
- Nausea and vomiting
- Stiff neck
- Sensitivity to light
- Drooping eyelids
- Lack of consciousness
According to USA Today, “Farquhar will remain in the hospital and be closely monitored by neurosurgeons for at least the next three weeks.”
“Re-hemorrhaging frequently occurs within the first two weeks of brain aneurysm rupture and could lead to further damage,” Dr. Farhat says. “It will be important to monitor him closely even if he is stable.”
About the Author
Jamie Bonnema, health enews contributor, is a specialist of public affairs and marketing at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn. She earned her BA in communications from DePaul University in Chicago. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, going to concerts, and cheering on the Chicago Cubs.