Doctor: teen probably did not die from hickey - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Doctor: teen probably did not die from hickey

(Source: WikiCommons) (Source: WikiCommons)

A medical doctor doubts a hickey resulted in the death of a 17-year-old.

Daily Mail reported 17-year-old Julio Macias Gonzalez of Mexico City died from a hickey given to him by his 24-year-old girlfriend. Several other media outlets then spread the story as quickly as possible.

The story sites Mexican media outlets, but a search of those outlets results in nothing verifiable. 

Dr. Ed Dominguez said the story doesn't make much sense. He's a medical doctor with decades of experience and accolades. He's currently the Medical Director of Organ Transplant Infectious Diseases at Methodist Health System in Dallas, Texas, 

The story says the 17-year-old died when the hickey caused a blood clot that traveled to his brain. Dominguez said that would mean the blood clot would've had to form in the carotid artery. That artery is deeper in the neck than the jugular vein, and thus it shouldn't be impacted by any sucking or surface bruising.

Dominguez said 17-year-olds have a higher likelihood to have a blood clot travel to their heart, not their brain.

"Anything is possible, but given the enormous number of hickeys humankind has sustained since recorded medical history (at least as far back as Hippocrates), this mechanism of stroke should be well described by now–and, it isn’t. Color me skeptical," Dominguez said.

The now-viral story also sources a 2011 case of a 44-year-old woman who suffered a small stroke and temporary paralysis after getting a hickey.

Dominguez said that is a much more reasonable scenario because the patient is older and the blood clot traveled to the heart (meaning the clot formed in the jugular vein not the carotid artery).

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