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New Zealand Woman Suffers Stroke, Paralysis After Hickey ‘Love Bite’

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A "love bite" -- aka, a hickey -- often leave one feeling embarrassed. But a woman in New Zealand was left partially paralyzed after one romantic encounter went wrong.

According to the UK's Daily Mail, the 44-year-old's story is the first reported of its kind. When the woman rushed to the hospital after experiencing a loss of movement on the left side of her body, doctors suspected she'd had a small stroke, but struggled find what may have caused it.

But a fading bruise mark on the right side of her neck led doctors to believe that the so-called "love bite" damaged a major artery and a resulting blood clot traveled to the woman's brain, causing the stroke.

"To my knowledge, it's the first time someone has been hospitalized by a 'hickey,'" said Dr. Teddy Wu, the woman's treating physician. Doctor Wu also warned that if the unnamed woman's condition had gone untreated, she could have suffered a number of subsequent strokes.

"Strokes have different levels of severity," he said, "but possibly patients can become paralyzed."

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