A Nebraska woman suffering with a chronically runny nose for the past two years recently discovered fluid from her brain was leaking out of her nose.
Doctors had dismissed it as allergies whenever she would bring it up. This year, physician assistant Carla Schneider from Nebraska Medicine in Omaha said it was not allergies at all. It was actually a cerebrospinal fluid leak caused by a hole in her skull. Cerebrospinal fluid acts as a protective layer to the brain.
Jackson described her runny nose like "a waterfall," telling ABC affiliate KETV she always kept tissues with her. She also told the station she suffered from chronic headaches. It began after she was in a car crash, when her face hit the dashboard, CNN reports.
Rhinologist Christie Barnes and neurosurgeon Dan Surdell surgically fixed the "potentially dangerous problem" several weeks ago, Nebraska Medicine said in a statement.
If left untreated, the leak could have caused a life-threatening infection.
Brain fluid can also leak out of people's ears, as in the case of Mark Hoffman, who used to wake up with a wet pillow. Hoffman suffered from a cerebrospinal fluid leak, too. He had surgery to correct the leak last year.
These leaks affect at least five out of every 100,000 people each year, Health reports. That number doesn't include leaks caused by trauma, like in the case of Jackson.