World Cup Contributes to Two Deadly Sleep Deprivation Episodes

Fan is short for “fanatic,” and a bit too much zealotry may have contributed to a death in China. The Huffington Post Healthy Living blog reports that one Chinese soccer fan died from a stroke after watching World Cup games for 48 hours straight. Shortly after Uruguay’s loss to Costa Rica on June 14, the 39-year-old man was reportedly taken to the hospital, where doctors discovered a brain hemorrhage.


“While news reports did not explain exactly how the man’s stroke might have been affected by his extreme sleep deprivation, past research has shown an association between chronically not getting enough sleep and increased stroke risk,” writes Rahel Gebreyes. “A 2012 study showed people sleeping fewer than six hours a night had a 4.5 times increased risk of stroke symptoms, compared with people getting seven to eight hours of shut-eye nightly.”

Due to the 11-hour time difference between China and Brazil, where the games are being held this year, Chinese fans had to stay up all night to catch the intense matchup, which ended at around 3 a.m. in China.

The Huff Post reports that this is not the only death potentially linked with sleep deprivation during this World Cup. According to Gebreyes, “Just last week, a 25-year-old man was found dead in his home in China shortly after the Spain v. Netherlands game, according to the New York Daily News. Though the man’s exact cause of death was not revealed, Eurosport reported sleep deprivation may have played a part.”

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