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In 2011 and 2013, whilst filming the hit HBO series Game of Thrones, the actor suffered two aneurysms, which the NHS explains as: "a bulge in a blood vessel caused by a weakness in the blood vessel wall."
Now, almost a decade on from the terrifying ordeal, Emilia told BBC’s Sunday Morning show that she's still dealing with the long-term effects. "The amount of my brain that is no longer usable – it’s remarkable that I am able to speak, sometimes articulately, and live my life completely normally with absolutely no repercussions," the 35-year-old said, explaining that she'd recently undergone a scan of her brain.
"There’s quite a bit missing!" she added. "Basically, as soon as any part of your brain doesn’t get blood for a second, it’s gone. And so the blood finds a different route to get around but then whatever bit it’s missing is therefore gone."
Looking back to when she experienced the aneurysms, Emilia said, "every day I thought I was going to die." But, she added, "I am in the really, really, really small minority of people that can survive that."
Previously, Emilia told the New Yorker that she'd undergone life-saving surgery, although this left her "screaming in pain."
"I had a massive bleed and the doctors made it plain that my chances of surviving were precarious if they didn’t operate," the actor recalled. "This time they needed to access my brain in the old-fashioned way—through my skull. And the operation had to happen immediately."
In light of her ordeal, the actor launched a charity – SameYou – through which she raises money for people recovering from brain surgeries and strokes.
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