Actress Tamala Jones, 48, made an appearance on The Tamron Hall Show and gave viewers an update on her health. The Wood actress shared that at the peak of her career, she suffered a brain aneurysm.
“I was born with it,” Jones said of her aneurysm. “I wasn’t expecting that, and no one else was. It was a headache that happened for two weeks straight. I was taking all the sinus medicine and Tylenol. [I] probably should of took an aspirin, and it kept going,” Jones said while describing the intensity of the signs and the medication she took to try to alleviate the discomfort.
A brain aneurysm is when a blood vessel in the brain balloons or bulges. Brain aneurysms aren’t uncommon and most are harmless, especially when small. However, they become harmful when they rupture, resulting in a hemorrhagic stroke or a subarachnoid hemorrhage.
Jones experienced an aneurysm while she was working on Season 4 of For Your Love.
“One morning, I woke up; I didn’t have any balance. I felt like I had to urinate really bad, and I stumbled to the toilet, nothing came out,” she continued. “My head started hurting really bad, and then I hit the floor. When I got up, the right side of my body was numb.”
The actress informed her boss about the scary health scare, but she was asked to come on set with medical supervision regardless.
“I got in the car, not realizing that this was done. My right foot was so heavy, I had to put my left foot on the brake and manually move this off the gas pedal. I drove to work, left foot, left hand,” Jones said while showing the audience how she was driving her car at the time.
She continued, telling Hall she ended up working the entire day despite being unwell but eventually went to see a doctor.
“I got to the hospital, and the doctor was like, ‘I am in awe that you’re alive. Let alone worked a whole day,” she recalled.
The actress survived that health challenge and took time out to care for herself so she could enjoy the acting career she has today. She also encouraged people to listen to their bodies.
“I feel great. I’m alive,” she said. “I’m still able to do what I love to do. I love this business. I love what we do. I love acting.”
While speaking with the American Academy of Neurology a few years ago, she talked about life after the health crisis.
“My mom and grandmother, Roxanne and Laverne Jones, took care of me and helped nurse me back to health,” she said. “The first few days were pretty much a blur—my mom and grandma would wake me up to feed me and bathe me. It took a full three months before I got my full strength back and was able to work again.”
She now encourages others to take care of their health.
“I wasn’t sleeping or eating properly. I was overworked,” she said. “I think in some ways my experience was a wake-up call to take better care of myself.”
“If I can help one person recognize the symptoms of a brain aneurysm and get help, then I will have made a difference.”