Si King health: Hairy Biker left ‘proper poorly’ after ‘shock’ condition – symptoms

Dave Myers reveals that Si King has caught Covid

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The cooking duo’s latest show Hairy Bikers: Route 66 follows them on a 2,000-mile journey across eight different states. The first episode, which airs on the BBC today (Thursday January, 20) focuses on the chef’s in Chicago, before they move onto a small-town and spend time with an Amish community where they learn about their alternative ways of life. Yet it was only before Christmas, when Dave appeared without Si on Morning Live, after the 55-year-old was struck with Covid.

When asked where Si was by Morning Live host Gethin Jones, Dave replied: “Oh, he’s got Covid. Yeah, he’s doing alright, he’s been a bit rough as I think people with Covid are. But he seems to be pulling around.

“You know how you either get better or get worse, fortunately he’s getting better.”

Luckily the chef was able to overcome the virus, but concern for Si’s health is particularly justified as the star nearly died after a traumatic health condition.

Back in 2013, Si started to suffer from severe headaches. Unaware of the extent of the issue, Si was tempted to take himself to bed as he admitted to feeling “exhausted”.

But instead, the chef took himself to hospital, something that was later referred to as a “serious decision” by the consultant who delivered the news that the star had a brain aneurysm.

“I’m an incredibly lucky man to even be here today to talk about it. I can’t thank the doctors and nurses enough,” Si said in an interview with The Mail.

“[The doctor] said to me, ‘If you went back to bed you would be dead’. So that was it.”

As well as suffering with a headache for four days straight, Si went on to explain that other strange symptoms soon started to develop.

“Everything just started to fall off the bottom of the TV,” he said. “I thought, ‘I’m in trouble here.’ Then I had this searing pain – the only way to describe it was like someone was going at my head with a rusty nail and a hammer.

“It’s an incredibly scary thing. More people die from this type of thing than survive. When I got to hospital all hell broke loose. The doctors did a lumbar puncture and found blood in my spinal fluid.

“At that point they grew really worried – I had to sign a load of forms to say I understood I may make it, or I may not.”

The panic surrounding Si’s health at the time was not only felt by medical professionals and the chef himself, as friend Dave was right by his side through the whole ordeal.

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Reflecting on both their 20 year long friendship, and the “shock” of Si’s hospital stint on The Guardian podcast Comfort Eating with Grace Dent earlier this year, Dave said: “We’ve been through a lot together, you know, over the years.”

“Bereavements, tragedies, you know, the whole lot. Divorces… Not to each other, but you know what I mean,” he added with a chuckle.

“We’ve been through a lot of the harsh stuff as well. He had a brain haemorrhage in 2013 and he was proper poorly. It was a shock, really.”

The NHS explains that the aneurysm is a bulge in a blood vessel caused by a weakness in the blood vessel wall. As blood passes through this weakness the pressure causes the area to bulge outwards.

Most brain aneurysms only cause noticeable symptoms if they burst (rupture). This leads to an extremely serious condition known as a subarachnoid haemorrhage, where bleeding caused by the ruptured aneurysm can cause extensive brain damage and symptoms.

A brain haemorrhage needs immediate medical attention, so understanding the symptoms that can occur is crucial. Individuals may experience:

  • A sudden agonising headache – it’s been described as a “thunderclap headache”, similar to A sudden hit on the head, resulting in a blinding pain unlike anything experienced before
  • A stiff neck
  • Sickness and vomiting
  • Pain on looking at light.

In comparison, unruptured brain aneurysms occasionally cause symptoms if they’re particularly large or press against tissues or nerves inside the brain. But some slightly different symptoms to suggest you might be suffering with an unruptured brain aneurysm includes the following:

  • Visual disturbances, such as loss of vision or double vision
  • Pain above or around your eye
  • Numbness or weakness on one side of your face
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Headaches
  • Loss of balance
  • Difficulty concentrating or problems with short-term memory.

The same treatment is used for both aneurysms that have ruptured or not. Typical treatment involves either filling the aneurysm with tiny metal coils, or an open operation to deal it shut with a tiny metal clip. Medication will also be given to patients in order to reduce blood pressure.

Talking about his slow recovery process afterlife-saving treatment, Si said: “The problem with an aneurysm is the level of fatigue you go through during recovery. You simply can’t do anything. It used to take me all day to make one cup of tea when I first came home out of hospital.”

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