More than one band has been called the Most Dangerous Band in the World, but Motörhead may well be the first to have actually caused a fan's brain to bleed.
The German medical journal The Lancet published a study of a 50-year-old man who developed a "chronic subdural haematoma" -- in layman's terms, bleeding in the brain -- following a bout of headbanging at a Motörhead show. In stiff, medical terminology, the Lancet article notes, "Headbanging is a contemporary dance form consisting of abrupt flexion—extension movements of the head to the rhythm of rock music, most commonly seen in the heavy metal genre."
The man had no history of brain issues and was otherwise healthy, but reported headbanging at a Motörhead show in late 2012, four weeks before going to see a doctor. The physicians submitting the article note, "health complications attributed to [headbanging] include carotid artery dissection, mediastinal emphysema, whiplash injury, and odontoid fracture," and warn, "While such shows are enjoyable and stimulating for the audience, some fans might be endangered by indulging in excessive headbanging."
The man who was the focus of the article had a hole drilled in his skull, the blood drained and some additional leakage over the next six days. He was sent home eight days after surgery and had no further issues.
The physicians conclude, "This case serves as evidence in support of Motörhead's reputation as one of the most hardcore rock'n'roll acts on earth, if nothing else because of their contagious speed drive and the hazardous potential for headbanging fans to suffer brain injury."
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