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Edwin van der Sar hospitalised: what is a bleed on the brain?

The legendary former Manchester United and Ajax goalkeeper is in an intensive care unit (ICU), the Dutch club announced.

Edwin van der Sar hospitalised after bleed on his brain

Dutch club Ajax have announced that legendary goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar is currently in hospital after suffering a bleed on his brain.

The 52-year-old’s condition was announced in a tweet from the club, for whom he was the chief executive until recently.

The tweet read: “On Friday, Edwin van der Sar has had a bleeding around his brain. “He’s currently in hospital in the intensive care unit and is in a stable condition.

“Once there is more concrete information, an update will follow.

“Everyone at Ajax wishes Edwin a speedy recovery. We’re thinking of you.”

Van der Sar played 130 times for the Netherlands’ national team and is widely considered to be one of the finest goalkeepers of his generation.

Why is Edwin van der Sar in hospital?

According to reports, the Dutch legend suffered “bleeding around his brain” while holidaying with his family in Croatia. He is currently in a stable condition but brain bleeds can be extremely serious.

The term brain bleed is a fairly broad one that can used to cover any internal bleeding in the skull. Doctors typically use the term ‘intercranial hemorrhage’ to describe this bleeding between layers of brain tissue.

Bleeding in the brain can be an incredibly serious issue, given that the brain relies on blood vessels for oxygen and nutrients. Internal bleeding would typically indicate that the flow of blood around the brain has been disrupted.

If the brain is deprived of oxygen for more than three of four minutes, the brain cells begin to die.

The Cleveland Clinic explains: “A brain bleed causes brain damage and yes, they can be life-threatening... Once brain cells die, they do not regenerate.”

At this stage it seems that Van der Sar has responded well to the hospitalisation and his condition has not worsened since the initial onset.

More on this breaking news story as it develops..