Jason Momoa speaks out about Emilia Clarke's life-threatening brain aneurysms: 'We've had so many scares'


Jason Momoa has opened up about his “Game of Thrones” costar Emilia Clarke’s life-threatening brain aneurysms.

“I’ve kind of been a part of that whole situation for a very long time, so we’ve had so many scares and trying to find the right way to come out and help,” Momoa, who played Clarke’s on-screen husband, Khal Drogo, on the hit HBO drama, told “Entertainment Tonight” at the season-eight premiere on Wednesday at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. “She’s so brave in helping the world and trying to raise awareness.”

He continued: “I’m very sad, because we almost lost her numerous times. I love her to bits and she’s here and she’s going to do great things with it and teach the world.”

In March, Clarke, who’s known for her role as Daenerys Targaryen, wrote a personal essay in The New Yorker, titled “A Battle for My Life,” in which she described surviving two aneurysms.


Read more:
Emilia Clarke reveals she underwent brain surgery twice during ‘Game of Thrones’ and has now founded a charity for rehab access

The 32-year-old actress said she experienced her first aneurysm after filming “Game of Thrones” in 2011. She recalled feeling a “shooting, stabbing, constricting pain” in her brain while working out with her trainer and collapsing in the gym bathroom. After Clarke got an MRI exam, she wrote, her ailment was diagnosed as a subarachnoid hemorrhage, or SAH, which she described as “a life-threatening type of stroke, caused by bleeding into the space surrounding the brain.”

She also said she found out that approximately “one-third of SAH patients die immediately or soon thereafter.”

At 24 years old, Clarke underwent her first brain surgery, which was referred to as “minimally invasive” and didn’t require opening her skull. The actress said she also suffered from aphasia and could only recite “nonsense words.” She couldn’t even recall her full name.

Daenerys Targaryen Dany Game of Throne season 7 Spoils of War HBOClarke as Daenerys Targaryen on ‘Game of Thrones’ season seven.

Clarke said that she felt “lost” as an actor because of her language impairment and that “in my worst moments, I wanted to pull the plug.”

“I asked the medical staff to let me die,” she said.

After the aphasia passed, she returned to the set of “Game of Thrones” but was warned she had a second, smaller aneurysm in her brain. Clarke said filming season two of the show was difficult and admittedly her worst. She said she kept the news out of the media because she didn’t want it to become a focal point.


Read more:
Here’s what the ‘Game of Thrones’ cast looks like in real life

“Even before we began filming season two, I was deeply unsure of myself,” she said. “I was often so woozy, so weak, that I thought I was going to die.”

Then in 2013, Clarke’s aneurysm doubled in size and required surgery as soon as possible. The procedure was unsuccessful, and the doctors “needed to access my brain in the old-fashioned way – through my skull,” she said.

After the second aneurysm was fixed, parts of her skull were replaced by titanium and she spent a month in the hospital. Then she returned to work after recovering.

Clarke’s near-death experiences led her to found a charity called Same You, whose purpose is to increase “primary research with the Stroke Association UK to understand the recovery needs” of people who experience brain injuries and strokes.

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