Bob Saget’s death in January was a very tragic thing, especially for someone who was still relatively young, was beloved by so many people, and who had contributed so much to the entertainment industry.
But now, there are folks raising questions about the serious head trauma he suffered.
His death was attributed to head trauma in an autopsy report released on Thursday, and it was assessed to be an accident, i.e. maybe he fell and then went to sleep, and then died.
Now, the description of the head trauma is much more extensive than initially suggested, according to the NY Times. He had multiple fractures in multiple areas on his head, both the front and the back.
Some neurosurgeons said that it would be unusual for a typical fall to cause Mr. Saget’s set of fractures — to the back, the right side, and the front of his skull. Those doctors said that the injuries appeared more reminiscent of ones suffered by people who fall from a considerable height or get thrown from their seat in a car crash.
The autopsy, though, found no injuries to other parts of Mr. Saget’s body, as would be expected in a lengthier fall. The medical examiner ruled that the death was accidental. The local sheriff’s office had previously said there were no signs of foul play.
“This is significant trauma,” said Dr. Gavin Britz, the chair in neurosurgery at Houston Methodist. “This is something I find with someone with a baseball bat to the head, or who has fallen from 20 or 30 feet.”
Dr. Britz noted that the autopsy described fractures to particularly thick parts of the skull, as well as to bones in the roof of the eye socket. “If you fracture your orbit,” he said, referring to those eye bones, “you have significant pain.”
While I don’t often have a lot of respect for Dr. Sanjay Gupta, he is a neurosurgeon and his description here of the injuries is accurate.
“When you read this autopsy report, that may still be the case, but it was a very significant blow to the head,” Gupta continued, pointing out that the skull fractures were extensive enough to stretch from the back of Saget’s head around to his right temporal bone – and that there were additional fractures on the front of his skull as well.
“In order to do that — when I first saw this, if I knew nothing else about what had happened, you would think that maybe this was someone who had fallen down the stairs and had several impacts to the head or been unrestrained in a car accident,” Gupta said. “I mean, it was that degree of force.”
“there is no hotel room I have ever stayed in that would allow for a fall significant enough to cause this kind of head injury… It really raises, to me, more questions than it provides answers.” – Dr. Dan Barrow, Chair of @EmoryNeurosurg, on Bob Saget autopsy results pic.twitter.com/MxMN0eFrAr
The officer in the above clip makes a good point about not seeing any signs of blood or foul play. Dr. Dan Barrow, Chair of Emory Neurosurgery, on the other hand, questions the nature of the fall hypothesis.
So, it does sound like there are questions that they might want to answer about how this all could have happened, and how Saget could have acquired such significant injuries to his head.