Heavy rock really can do your head in

By John von Radowitz

Heavy metal really can do your head in, according to doctors who treated a Motorhead fan with a blood clot on the brain caused by headbanging.

The 50-year-old German developed the condition after getting carried away at one of the hardcore rock band's concerts.

Specialists treated the fan at Hannover Medical School two weeks after he started suffering a constant, worsening headache that affected the whole head.


A CT (computerised tomography) scan confirmed that the man had a subdural haematoma - a clot caused by blood leaking into the space between the skull and the brain - on his right side.

Surgeons successfully removed the clot via a hole drilled into the skull, leading to a full recovery.

Subdural haematomas are most often caused by blows to the head, but the patient could not recall suffering such an injury.

However, a month before attending hospital he had been to a concert by Motorhead, the heavy metal band led by Lemmy (pictured) where he joined other fans headbanging to the fast and furious music.

A review of the medical literature revealed three previous cases where headbanging led to blood clots.

One, an acute haematoma, resulted in sudden death.